Ministers have connected from across the globe to discuss trade, economic recovery and technical cooperation during the final APEC Ministerial meeting of New Zealand’s host year.
Co-chaired by Foreign Affairs Minister, Nanaia Mahuta, and Trade and Export Growth Minister, Damien O’Connor, discussions were focused on resilient recovery from COVID-19 in the Asia-Pacific region.
“APEC Ministers have recognised the need for a COVID recovery that ensures no one is left behind. This particularly includes women and indigenous peoples who are most negatively impacted by the global pandemic,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
“It is also important that APEC continues to emphasise its strong support for global climate commitments and a low-emission, climate-resilient future for the region.
“I was pleased that we could agree to a plan to halt the increase of harmful fossil fuel subsidies – which drive environmental degradation and contribute to climate change,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
Minister Damien O’Connor also said that real progress had been made under New Zealand’s leadership of APEC
“Since trade Ministers discussed vaccine supply chains in June, most APEC economies have made access to vaccines easier by lowering tariffs, rejecting export restrictions, and getting vaccines through ports faster.
“Ministers agreed it is essential APEC supports the WTO in achieving an ambitious set of outcomes as we re-stabilise it in December. This approach will benefit all. Free, fair and open trade will get us all through the pandemic,” Damien O’Connor said.
In hosting APEC, New Zealand’s priorities have been:
Agreement on economic and trade policies to strengthen the COVID-19 recovery;
Increasing inclusion and sustainability for a more resilient recovery, and
Pursuing innovation and a digitally enabled recovery.
The APEC Ministerial Meeting is one of the major events in the series of events held during 8-13 November hosted by New Zealand.