APEC Business Advisory Council

Commerce is the lifeblood of the region and business is the engine of economic growth.

Recognizing the integral role of business and the value of representative business advice on key issues, APEC Leaders established the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) in November 1995.

The APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) is the private-sector arm of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation. The main mandate of this council is to advise Leaders and other APEC officials on issues of interest to business. ABAC also responds to requests from various APEC sub-groups for information about the business perspective of specific areas of cooperation.

This private-sector body presents recommendations to APEC Leaders in an annual dialogue and advises APEC officials on business-sector priorities and concerns. ABAC meets four times per year, and ABAC representatives also attend senior officials' meetings, the annual ministerial meeting and the sectoral ministerial meetings.

ABAC members are appointed by their respective economic leader and represent a range of business sectors, including micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs). Each of the 21 member economies determines the term of their appointees and provides for their administrative and staff support.

The Chair of ABAC comes from the economy that is hosting APEC and therefore changes annually.

The council is also supported by the ABAC International Secretariat based in Manila. The Secretariat serves all members and all economies and maintains the ABAC website. Funding is provided through annual member dues, following the APEC formula.

Last page update: December 2018

2019 Program

In the Fourth ABAC Meeting held in Papua New Guinea from 13 to 15 November 2018, members endorsed the following 2019 Work Program proposed by Chile.

  • Overarching Priories
    • Inclusive trade policy to foster growth in the digital era:It is a people-centered approach to enable people in poverty to take advantage of benefits of digital era.
    • Advancing regional economic integration: It requires us to commit ourselves to free trade and embrace multilateralism within a rule-based international structure
    • Sustainable Development Working Group
      1. Fostering sustainable food systems
      2. Energy, innovation and circular economy
      3. Ensuring sustainability of, and cohesion around extractive industries
    • MSME and Entrepreneurship Working Group
      1. Promoting MSMEEs success in GVCs
      2. Strengthening the participation of women in the economy
      3. Best practices for MSMEEs and regulations that foster their business
    • Finance and Economics Working Group
      1. Enabling technology to drive increased economic and financial inclusion
      2. Promoting MSMEs access to finance
      3. Advancing financial integration in APEC
    • Digital Innovation Working Group
  • Priorities of Each working Group
    • Regional Economic Integration Working Group
      1. Further promote liberalization and facilitation of trade and investment
      2. Advancing towards the FTAAP
      3. Strengthening the services agenda and progress in implementing the APEC Services Competitiveness Roadmap
  1. Facilitating human capital digitalization
  2. Guidelines for a regulatory framework that facilitates business
  3. Enhancing cyber security and resilience


ABAC members endorsed the following schedule of meetings.

ABAC1: Atlanta, 1–4 March

ABAC2: Jakarta, 24–27 Jakarta

ABAC3: Hangzhou, 22–25 July 22-25

ABAC4: Santiago 11–13 November

APEC CEO Summit: Santiago, 14 November 14

ABAC Dialogue with the Leaders: Santiago 16 November


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