APEC host warns of protectionism


“Protectionist trends are a threat to development and prosperity across the Asia-Pacific, Papua New Guinea treasurer and Deputy Prime Minister Charles Abel has warned.

Mr Abel was speaking during the APEC Leaders’ meeting which is being held this week in the PNG capital of Port Moresby.

“Protectionist trends stemming from trade tensions and the build-up of debt are troubling and a real threat to development and prosperity right around the APEC region,” Mr Abel told the APEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting (which he chairs).

“It is incumbent upon us, APEC finance ministers, to remain vigilant and move forward with actions that both propel and harness inclusive opportunities made possible by digital advances.”

Mr Abel said the response to new technologies would determine nations’ capacity to alleviate poverty and build a new middle class.

PNG Prime Minister Peter O’Neill addressed APEC Finance Ministers, emphasising the role of his nation in the region.

“Papua New Guinea is the biggest economy among the Pacific islands. What happens here has a huge impact on our neighbours in this part of the world,” Mr O’Neill said.

“The policy support we get from APEC helps build our economy and the confidence of the investment community in us.”

APEC Secretariat executive director Allan Bollard said more and more, integration and trade growth among APEC economies hinged on investment, data flows and associated institutional issues.

“Work in APEC on digital arrangements for public finance exemplify our new growth imperatives,” Dr Bollard said.

“Digital platforms must have interconnectivity and work for small firms which is where most of our economy is focused in APEC. We hope that this can help small and micro businesses get easier access into the big growth drivers of the international economy.”

Article Courtesy of The Daily Cargo News November 12 2018


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