Regional business leaders meet to discuss the long term prosperity of the region

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

By Cassandra Oaten


Business leaders from across the region will meet this month in Auckland, New Zealand to attend the first APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) meeting of 2014.


Three elected delegates from each Asian Pacific economy will attend, as chosen by their nation’s political leader to represent the business needs of their economy.


Four meetings a year shape this high level event with sequential meetings in 2014 planned to occur in Santiago, Chile; Seattle, USA and Beijing, China. The 2014 work program builds on the achievements of the past years by focusing on accelerating regional economic integration; championing sustainable development; supporting small, medium and micro-enterprises (SMMEs); fostering entrepreneurship; strengthening infrastructure development and connectivity; and promoting the development and integration of financial markets.


Specific matters will be addressed within a series of working groups. The working groups discussing matters of high relevance to business’ exporting services globally include the Regional Economic Integration Working Group (REIWG) who work to:

• Support the WTO and prevent backsliding towards protectionism;

• The building towards a Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP);

• Advancing a new services agenda;

• Furthering investment liberalization and facilitation; and


The Infrastructure and Connectivity Working Group (ICWG) who work to:

• Accelerate infrastructure development;

• Facilitate infrastructure financing;

• Promote capacity building to enhance regional connectivity; and

• Build effective global value chains.