Mining Task Force
Around 70 per cent of all mining output is produced and consumed in APEC member economies—this includes most of the world’s bauxite, copper, iron, nickel, silver, tin and zinc. Collectively, these resources play a role in everything from home construction to transportation and digital infrastructure, food production and healthcare. The mining, mineral and metal industries are of great importance to APEC, with close to 75 per cent of all global mining trade and investment conducted within the region.
According to the World Trade Organization, the share of natural resources in total world exports increased more than 22 per cent since 1990. APEC’s promotion of free trade and investment in the mining sector reflects the importance of minerals and metals in generating economic growth—as a component in many key products that have improved living standards. APEC’s collaborative activities support well-managed, effectively regulated mining and metallurgical operations that are sustainable and that contribute to the well-being and livelihoods of citizens in APEC economies.
In 2007, APEC ministers endorsed the establishment of the Mining Task Force (MTF), building on previous activities within APEC. The MTF derives its mandate from priorities set by APEC Leaders and ministers and from direction provided by ministers responsible for mining. The Mining Task Force is composed of policy officials who work with experts in government and academia, private industry, and regional and international organizations.
At the 3rd Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Mining in 2007, ministers agreed to APEC’s mining policy principles, such as:
- Pursuing policies that enhance the sustainable production, trade and consumption of minerals and metals thereby improving the economic and social wellbeing of our people
- Fostering regular exchange between member economies about experiences with regulations, policies and practices and about significant developments in each economy's minerals and metals sector.
- Fostering investment certainty in the APEC minerals sector through the pursuit of open minerals and metals markets and the articulation of clear and predictable investment policies
- Promoting cost effective, evidence-based, transparent and objective-based measures which improve efficiency in the regulation of the minerals industry to contribute to economic, environment and social development outcomes
- Encourage, support and promote the initiatives of the minerals and metals industry and of stakeholders that contribute to sustainable development goals
- Support capacity building activities for sustainable development so that all APEC economies can maximize the benefits and minimize the impacts from minerals resource development
The 5th Meeting of APEC Ministers Responsible for Mining was held on 27–28 June 2014 in Beijing, China. The ministers issued a joint statement about actions that are needed to be taken to achieve sustainable development in the mining sector. The ministers instructed the Mining Task Force to formulate and implement an action plan. The statement outlined actions in the following three main areas of focus:
- Closer cooperation of the mining sector in the Asia-Pacific region
- Innovation-driven growth
- Social responsibility and common development
Ministers also emphasized the need to accelerate the mining industry’s transformation and upgrading, as well as the pursuit of a modernized development path to improve its social, environmental and economic benefits.
In 2015, APEC established a fund to support mining collaboration. The fund was announced following the 9th Mining Task Force (MTF9) meeting held on 26–27 August 2015 in Cebu, Philippines. This fund supports APEC projects that:
- Strengthen the capacity of local businesses, mining industries and/or regulators in developing member economies
- Enhance the trade and investment environment for mining
- Contribute to APEC objectives for women’s economic empowerment
Further details on the guidelines and eligibility for the Mining Sub-fund are available here.
Last page update: September 2018
The MTF meets annually. In 2017 an action plan was endorsed with the aim of listing practical and substantive work to be developed by the task force to contribute to regional economic integration and sustainable and inclusive growth in the APEC Region.
Since 2014, an annual public-private dialogue on mining has been organized by ABAC in coordination with the MTF to promote the dialogue and strengthening the collaboration between government officials and mining industry in the APEC region.
In August 2018, Papua New Guinea organized APEC Mining Week, during which the 12th Mining Task Force Meeting, the 5th Public Private Dialogue on Mining and the 6th Ministers Responsible for Mining Meeting took place.
During the 12th MTF meeting, members exchanged information on projects and best practices and explored ways to continue strengthening collaboration for a more sustainable mining in the APEC region.
The 5th Public Private Dialogue on Mining was focused on the following topics:
- Harnessing technology to promote mining safety and sustainability
- Addressing infrastructure challenges in the mining industry
- Cultivating inclusive growth in the mining industry
- Communicating the value of the mining industry.
The 6th Ministers Responsible for Mining agenda was focused on the importance of inclusive and sustainable development practices, how to promote further investment in the mining industry for growth, overcoming innovation-driven growth barriers and inclusive development, use and trade of minerals and metals in generating socio-economic benefits, sharing best practices in management, technology transfer and a generally closer cooperation of the mining sector in the APEC region.
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In 2015 a Capacity Building Needs survey was conducted in which government representatives from 10 APEC developing member economies identified their top priorities for capacity building, particularly: