Half way through SOM 1 and Related Meetings

24 February 2017, Nha Trang City, Khanh Hoa, Viet Nam – Day 7 of SOM 1 and related meetings consists of 11 meetings from nine APEC committees and groups, including Committee of Trade and Investment (CTI), Economic Committee (EC), Services (GOS), Investment (IEG), Tourism (TWG), Health (HWG), Electronic Commerce Steering Group (ECSG), Alliance for Supply Chain Connectivity (A2C2) and Competition Policy and Law (CPLG).

At the Public - Private Dialogue on the Supply Chain Connectivity Framework Action Plan (SCFAP), delegates discussed Phase 2 of SCFAP, addressing five supply chain chokepoints, including inefficient clearance of goods at Customs and lack of coordination among border agencies, inadequate transport infrastructure and services, lack of capacity of local logistics sub-providers, underdeveloped policy and regulatory framework for e-commerce... Building on initial progress of SCFAP 1 (2010 - 2015) with the goal of improving supply-chain efficiency by 10%, SCFAP 2 (2017 - 2020) is expected to further reduce cost, increase efficiency and safety in transporting goods and services through APEC supply chains.

Also on the issue of supply chain, the A2C2 participants had a chance to discuss and shape supply-chain connectivity cooperation priorities, especially on the role of services. A2C2 was established in 2014 by APEC’s Ministers responsible for Trade to serve as an advisory channel for all interested stakeholders, including experts from member economies, companies, industry associations, multilateral institutions and nongovernmental organizations, to contribute to improving supply chain performance. Over the last two years, under the auspices of the CTI, A2C2 has provided important guidance and technical inputs on a number of capacity building programs in the AsiaPacific to help expedite the movement of goods and services in a seamless, efficient and costeffective manner throughout the region.

At the CTI's "Trade Policy Dialogue to Advance Understanding on Non-tariff Measures in the Food Sector", representatives from the business sector shared with member economies their opinions as well as experiences dealing with non-tariff measures (NTMs). Delegates also discussed ways to mitigate the effects of specific NTMs on food trade. According to the 2016 ABAC report, non-tariff measure is one of the main obstacles to trade in food.

At the "Workshop on Use of International Instruments to Strengthen Contract Enforcement in Supply Chain Finance for Global Businesses (including MSMEs)", speakers shared and discussed their views on international standards for contract enforcement and supply chain finance, contract enforcement and dispute resolution through international instruments, online dispute resolution for MSMEs, etc. The workshop is an EC’s initiative aiming to strengthen legal infrastructure and improve business environment in member economies, thus contributing to the APEC structural reform agenda.

Participants at the CPLG's "Seminar on Investigative Powers of Competition Agencies" focused on exchange experience regarding the development of investigative powers of competition agenciesin order to implement more effective mechanism against anticompetitive conducts. The implementation of competition policies provides markets with a framework that encourages market discipline, eliminates distortions and promotes economic efficiency, which are the main objectives of the CPLG.

Following the sub-group meetings yesterday, the TWG and ECSG started their plenary today. At these meetings, delegates discussed strategic plans and initiatives, including the 2016 State of APEC Tourism Report, the Travel Facilitation Initiative, etc.

Today also saw the last meetings from the GOS, IEG and HWG. Participants focused on reviewing the implementation of long-term plans and strategies, including APEC Services Competitiveness Roadmap, the Healthy Asia Pacific 2020 Roadmap, Investment Facilitation Action Plan, etc. Delegates also reported on the implementation of ongoing projects and presented new proposals for 2017.