The APEC Economic Committee was established in 1994 to promote structural reform and strengthen APEC's capability in the analysis of long-term macroeconomic trends and studies of microeconomic issues.
In 2021, APEC structural reform ministers endorsed the Enhanced APEC Agenda for Structural Reform (EAASR), which will guide APEC’s work on structural reform until the end of 2025. The EAASR draws its lessons from former structural reform programs, and seeks to contribute to APEC’s overarching goal to ensure an open, dynamic, resilient and peaceful Asia-Pacific community, for the prosperity of all our people and future generations, through measures in line with the following four pillars:
- Creating an enabling environment for open, transparent, and competitive markets
- Boosting business recovery and resilience against future shocks
- Ensuring that all groups in society have equal access to opportunities for more inclusive, sustainable growth, and greater well-being
- Harnessing innovation, new technology, and skills development to boost productivity and digitalization
Moreover, the EAASR encourages economies to adopt the following three approaches to promote structural reform for inclusive growth:
- Delivering the six core structural reforms (competition policy and law; strengthening economic and legal infrastructure; ease of doing business; regulatory reform; public sector governance; corporate law and governance) to improve market functioning and transparency
- Implementing specific market reforms to improve innovation and competitiveness of business and achieve pro-inclusion benefits
- Adopting a holistic approach to structural reform which combines core reforms, specific market reforms and broader policies to boost productivity and economic resilience
The Economic Committee meets twice a year and works closely with other relevant APEC fora.
Last page update: November 2023
Structural Reform Ministerial Meeting
The Economic Committee held the third Structural Reform Ministerial Meeting (SRMM), hosted by New Zealand, on 16 June 2021. Ministers endorsed the SRMM Statement as well as the Enhanced APEC Agenda for Structural Reform (2021–2025) and the third APEC Ease of Doing Business Action Plan (2020–2025).
Economic Committee Meetings
The Economic Committee held an EAASR Mid-Term Review Meeting on 13 August in Seattle, Washington, United States, to discuss mid-term progress on EAASR implementation, share experiences and lessons learned, and further guide economies’ reform actions. The meeting engaged stakeholders including officials from member economies, the APEC Policy Support Unit, APEC Business Advisory Council, representatives from the private sector, a local tribal council representative, and international organizations including the OECD and the World Economic Forum.
The most recent Economic Committee meeting also took place in Seattle on 14 and 15 August 2023. Members discussed key structural reform topics, including implementation of the EAASR, the development of the current and future APEC Economic Policy Reports (AEPR), women economic empowerment and ESG practices and regulatory frameworks. Economic Committee members engaged in policy dialogues on the following topics: Toward a Green and Just Transition; Improving Access to Credit in the Asia Pacific through Asset-Based Finance – the Cape Town Convention and its Mining, Agricultural Construction (MAC) Protocol; and Importance of Corporate Governance Regulation to Enhance Sustainable Development.
EC Publications and APEC Economic Policy Reports
The Economic Committee publishes an annual flagship APEC Economic Policy Report. The AEPRs provide in-depth analysis and policy recommendations relating to a specific structural reform-related topic. The current AEPR, Structural Reform and a Green Recovery from Economic Shocks, was published in November 2023. A fact sheet on the 2023 AEPR is available here.
The Economic Committee also produces other APEC publications. To view all EC publications, click here.
Capacity Building Projects
Economic Committee member economies implement various capacity-building projects (both APEC-funded and self-funded) relating to APEC’s structural reform agenda. Some recent capacity building events include:
- Virtual workshop on ‘Equality of Opportunities: APEC Experiences in Furthering Inclusive Economic Growth’ (United States)
- Workshop on ‘Stakeholder Engagement and Capacity Building on the APEC Collaborative Framework on Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) to Improve Cross-Border Trade in Indonesia’ (Indonesia)
- Policy Dialogue on ‘Efforts to Promote Economic Opportunity and Inclusion: a Case Study on Indigenous Peoples’ (Canada)
- 16th Conference on Good Regulatory Practices (GRP16) (United States)
- Gender and Structural Reform Workshop: Inclusive Access to Credit and Financial Services’ (United States)
In 2004, APEC Leaders endorsed an ambitious work program called the Leaders' Agenda to Implement Structural Reform (LAISR). The agenda covered five areas for structural policy reform: regulatory reform, competition policy, public sector governance, corporate governance, and strengthening economic and legal infrastructure.
Building on the work in these five areas, APEC's structural reform agenda was expanded beyond the LAISR's priority areas through the APEC New Strategy for Structural Reform (ANSSR) initiative, launched in 2010, and the Renewed APEC Agenda for Structural Reform (RAASR), launched in 2015. In 2021, APEC structural reform ministers endorsed the Enhanced APEC Agenda for Structural Reform (EAASR), which will guide APEC’s work on structural reform until the end of 2025.