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10 Things To Know About APEC



The APEC meetings have been around the country since January this year. Traffic has also been around the streets ever since. Aside from the world leaders coming in the country, what else do we know about the APEC meetings? I’ll share a few of what I learned from the APEC forums I have attended here.

1. What is APEC?

APEC stands for Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation. It is an international organization participated by the governments of several countries in the Asia-Pacific which aims to promote free commerce and prosperous economy.

The creators of this desired to conduct group meetings that would facilitate the growth of the economy of each of its members through promoting each state’s cooperation, trade alleviation, and opening investment opportunities to the communities in the Asia-Pacific.

2. Who are the members of APEC?

Currently, it has 21 member economies.

Note: The term “member economies” is used because APEC members’ engagement with one another involves issues on economy and trade.

Originally, it has only 12 members. But as time went on, more and more countries joined the cooperation initiative.

Right now, the 21 member economies are Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Canada, United States, Chinese Taipei, People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong, Mexico, Papua New Guinea, Chile, Peru, Russia, and Vietnam.

3. How did APEC started?

APEC was first introduced by Australian Prime Minister, Bob Hawke, during his speech in Seoul, South Korea in January 1989. Later that year, it held its first meeting in Canberra.

The meetings started as annual informal dialogs of the foreign and trade ministers of its original members: Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Canada, and the United States. Those were initiated so that the growth and prosperity of the Asia-Pacific region will be sustained.

4. Who are observing the APEC meetings?

The APEC meetings are being observed by the ASEAN Secretariat, The Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC), and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. They are entitled to make participations in the meetings, and they can access its documents and other information in exchange of sharing their insights, expertise and partnership for the cooperation and growth of the Asia-Pacific region.


ASEAN aims to promote regional cooperation and accelerate economic growth, social progress, and cultural development in the Southeast Asian region through joint endeavors in the spirit of equality and partnership.

PECC is comprised of senior individuals from the business and industry sector, government, academic, and other intellectual circles – creating a tripartite partnership.

The Pacific Islands Forum in the leading regional inter-governmental forum in South Pacific comprised of 16 independent and self-governing states.

5. When did the Philippines first hosted APEC?

The Philippines first hosted APEC in 1996 in Subic Bay, Zambales. It was attended by world leaders such as US President Bill Clinton and Chinese President Jiang Zemin.

The Subic summit was the crucial milestone of the APEC evolution and a real test to the commitment of the member economies to their Individual and Collective Action Plans.

6. What is happening in APEC 2015?

APEC 2015 is composed of more than a hundred meetings attended by more than a thousand delegates from the 21 member economies.

The meetings were held in the 10 selected areas outside of Manila: Iloilo, Clark, Bacolod, Pampanga, Laoag, Boracay, Bagac Bataan, Subic, Tagaytay, and Cebu.

It will end in November 18-19 in the Leaders’ Summit and then 24-25 in the 2015 APEC Typhoon Symposium in Manila.

7. APEC 2015 Scope of Work

The information below is provided by the Cebu Government Information’s office.

  • Trade and Investment Liberalization (reduce and eliminate tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade and investment, and opening markets)
  • Business Facilitation – reducing the cost of business transactions, improving access to trade information, and bringing into line policy and business strategies to facilitate growth and free and open trade)
  • Economic and Technical Cooperation (ECOTECH) – assisting APEC member economies to build the necessary capacities to take advantage of global trade)
  • What do they talk about?
    – common critical issues across various sectors
    Climate change trade
    Structural reform disaster
    Energy transportation
    Economy business

8. Why host APEC 2015?

The information below is provided by the Cebu Government Information’s office.

  • Showcase Philippines’ vibrant and dynamic economy and top tourism destinations
  • Widen opportunities for foreign investments
  • Strengthen trade ties especially with other member economies
  • Fulfills international commitment as Member Economy
  • Raises international stature of the Philippines
  • Deepens recognition of the Philippines as a vibrant, dynamic, energetic, innovative Economy
  • Worldwide Media Exposure
  • Gain stronger influence in order to advance the Philippines’ domestic/economic properties
  • Promotion of good governance
  • Enhancing the image of the country to foreign investors
  • Market opening and capacity building
  • Active stakeholder engagement and building support for domestic economic objectives

9. Benefits of APEC 2015 to the Philippines so far

The information below is provided by the Cebu Government Information’s office.

  • Radisson Blu announced that they will release an extra bonus of P437T to each of their 200+ employees after they collected more than P10M in service charge alone due to the APEC meetings.
  • Increased Income
  • Taxi Drivers and tourism industry front liners’
  • Farmers supplying food to the hotels
  • Craft industries (accessories and souvenir items)

10. APEC Calendar of Events

Please see

More information about APEC 2015 can be found here:

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