At the Plenary Hall II, Queen Sirikit National Convention Center, Prime Minister and Defense Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha chaired the APEC Leaders’ Informal Dialogue with Guests, namely, President Macron, and His Royal Highness, Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud on November 18, 2022. The session was held under the topic: “Sustainable Trade and Investment Between APEC and Trade Partners”. Deputy Secretary-General to the Prime Minister and Acting Government Spokesperson Anucha Burapachaisri disclosed gist as follows:
According to the Prime Minister, this is the 3rd time Thailand hosts APEC, and the world is in starkly different geopolitical and economic circumstances from when the country hosted APEC in 1992 and 2003. Economically, the setbacks and scars from COVID-19 continue to unravel, and the world now faces rising inflation, surging commodity prices, increasing energy and food insecurities, disrupted global supply chains and elevating financial stability risks, as well as next generation trade challenges, such as climate change and digital disruptions.
The theme of APEC 2022 “Open. Connect. Balance.” is based on the overarching concept of the Bio-Circular-Green (BCG) Economy to drive the work under the three pillars of the APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040. Thai officials met and engaged with the private sector and stakeholders throughout the year and the country hosted eight Minister-level meetings to advance APEC’s cooperation. While much progress has been made, Thailand recognizes that cooperation with partners outside APEC is instrumental to promote recovery and growth at a broader level.
The Prime Minister added that APEC leaders had a very good discussion on how they can move APEC forward in a sustainable and inclusive manner, and invited the two distinguished Guests to share their view on how and what can be done together to promote sustainable growth and advance cooperation with APEC. He also stated that this year APEC initiated a refreshed conversation on the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific or FTAAP to move forward regional economic integration and support the multilateral trading system.
Following the views shared by economy leaders, the Prime Minister concluded that all the leaders look in the same direction that sustainable trade and investment are keys to global economic recovery. Thailand believes that trade and investment are key to economic growth. It is the government’s obligation to provide a conducive ecosystem to help advance science, technology, and innovation and digitalization which will stimulate a strong and speedy recovery. At the same time, APEC needs to ensure that all segments of each economy, in particular, MSMEs, women and youth have access to capital, information and technology. (PRD)