1. We, APEC Ministers Responsible for Mining (MRM), met on 27-28 June 2014 in Beijing, China under the chairmanship of H.E. Mr. Jiang Daming, Minister of Land and Resources of the People’s Republic of China.
2. Drawing on the joint statements from the previous APEC Mining Ministerial meetings, and taking into account the 10 APEC Mining Policy Principles, as well as the results of the just-concluded 8th Meeting of the Mining Task Force (MTF), the Mining Ministers of the APEC economies recognize the significance of sustainable development in mining. We believe this can be achieved through regional integration, fostering sustainable investment, increasing social responsibility, and innovation and environmental advances in mining and metallurgy.
3. The APEC theme for 2014 is “Shaping the Future through Asia-Pacific Partnership”. Under this framework and centered on the MRM5 theme—“Closer Mining Cooperation for Transformation and Growth”, we discussed three topics, namely “closer cooperation of the mining sector in the Asia-Pacific region”, “innovation-driven growth”, and “social responsibility and common development”.
4. As highlighted in the previous four Meetings of APEC Ministers Responsible for Mining, sustainable development in mining plays an important role in the development and prosperity of the Asia-Pacific region. The Asia-Pacific region is an engine of global economic growth as well as a significant producer and consumer of minerals, metals and related products. The development, processing, utilization, investment and trade of minerals, metals and related products can play an important role in promoting economic and social development, creating jobs, reducing poverty, improving infrastructure and closing regional development gaps.
5. We noted that since the 2008 downturn in the world economy, the global mining sector has faced significant changes and trends such as fluctuating demand for major mineral commodities, constantly fluctuation prices of a number of mineral commodities, increasing concerns for the environment and worker safety, increased costs of labor and equipment, growing challenges of mining investment, as well as volatility and declining indicators for mining investment and financing.
6. We also noted while global growth is likely to be slower and less balanced than desired in 2014, notwithstanding that growth within the APEC region has exceeded global growth rates but is still lower than its potential, industrial restructuring and new technological advances are accelerating. Some developed economies are reindustrializing and revitalizing their manufacturing sectors, and industrialization and urbanization are in full swing in emerging economies. All these factors indicate that there will be a strong demand for minerals and metals for years to come. The trend of sustained fundamental growth of the mining sector remains unchanged and growth drivers remain strong.
7. We recognize that to adapt to the trend of the transformation and development of the world economy, the mining sector, as an important basic industry, should accelerate its transformation and upgrading and pursue a modernized development path featuring cooperation, safety, security, efficiency, green technology, and comprehensive development in order to constantly improve the social, environmental, and economic benefits.
To this end, we propose the following:
Closer Cooperation of the Mining Sector in the Asia-Pacific Region
8. We are pleased to see fruitful cooperation among economies in mineral prospecting, development, processing, investment, trade, management, science and technology, services and environmental protection. We recognize differences among member economies in populations and development levels, in the needs of minerals and metals, as well as in geological endowments and development and utilization levels. We note that mining cooperation should contribute to further the goals expressed in the 2013 Economic Leaders’ Declaration. In this context, we support mutually beneficial cooperation in the mining sector to meet our individual development goals.
9. We propose that, guided by the Bogor Goals and the 21st APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, we will actively participate in the APEC Investment Facilitation Action Plan and encourage adoption of effective measures to promote an enabling environment for mining investment and trade facilitation in minerals, metals and related products. We encourage APEC economies to improve their mining investment environments, administration and services for the mining sector, as well as their basic geological surveys and geological information services. We also stress the importance of promoting open, transparent, and well-operating markets in the mining sector, as well as investment and financing cooperation for win-win development.
10. We reaffirm our Leaders’ strong commitment in Bali in 2013 to strengthen and deepen regional economic integration, eliminate barriers to international trade and investment in this region, as well as reaffirm the APEC Trade Ministers’ 2014 Joint Statement on Supporting Multilateral Trading System. Committed to building a sound interactive mechanism between suppliers and clients, we will work to accommodate our mutual concerns for the development of minerals and metals markets. We recognize the important role of Regional Trade Agreements (RTAs) and Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) in promoting trade of minerals, metals and related products.
11. We support cooperation and information-sharing on mining issues, including with the private sector through ABAC. We encourage economies to make full use of ASEAN and other multilateral, regional and bilateral cooperation mechanisms, to strengthen dialogue on mining policy and practice. We agree to work more closely with the relevant UN agencies and other relevant international organizations, and welcome an active role of mining organizations and associations from member economies in promoting cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region.
12. We recognize that innovation drives the green, safe, harmonious and efficient development of the mining sector, and that innovation adds value to the mining related activities with urban mining as an example. We support creating an enabling environment for scientific and technological innovation, formulating and implementing policies favorable to innovation, and to building a platform more favorable to innovation and transfer of technology. We will work towards advancing research and development cooperation opportunities, improving standards and regulations to meet our environmental objectives, facilitating trade and investment, and promoting market mechanisms. We will also seek to apply and spread scientific and technological findings, promote effective integration of production, teaching, research and application, improve labor quality and unleash work force potential.
13. We support stimulating creativity in businesses and encourage their increased support for scientific and technological innovation in the mining sector, as well as stepping up development and promotion of theories, approaches, techniques and equipment for geological surveys, efficient exploration, clean production, mine safety and comprehensive utilization in order to improve the economic and environmentally sound structure of the mining sector and promote its transformation and upgrading.
14. We also emphasize the importance of cooperation in enhancing scientific and technological innovation capacity. To this end, we welcome closer cooperation among businesses in the mining sector across the Asia-Pacific region to utilize each other’s complementary advantages for mutual benefits. We encourage economies and businesses to cooperate in research and development in mining science, technology and standards, and to enhance exchanges, training and promotion of scientific and technological findings. We call for APEC economies to promote building the innovation capacity of the mining sector in the Asia-Pacific region.
15. We recognize the important contribution of the Minamata Convention on Mercury towards protecting human health and the environment, and encourage all APEC economies to take necessary measures to meet the requirements of the Convention. In particular, we note that the Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining sector has been one of the top contributors to global mercury pollution, and encourage all APEC economies to cooperate and to take steps to reduce mercury use and release from this sector, as well as to promote knowledge and experience sharing of substitute technology to support sustainable gold processing on voluntary and mutually-agreed terms.
Social Responsibility and Common Development
16. We recall and support the initiative of the 16th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting to promote Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). We recognized that advocating and promoting CSR by mining businesses is an essential component towards realizing sustainable development and, promoting inclusive and harmonious development of the mining sector. We are committed to putting people first, increasing efficiency in use of both energy and materials, enhancing the role of communities, maximizing the positive socio-economic effects from the development of the minerals and metals sector, strengthening ecological and environmental protection in mining activities, achieving safe production in mines, protecting the health and safety of miners and securing more understanding and support for mining development.
17. We recognize the need to create an enabling environment for businesses to fulfill their social responsibilities through CSR activities and through dialogue with stakeholders. We encourage stakeholders including governments, businesses, communities and industrial associations to conduct dialogues on CSR and share lessons learned. We call for regulators to play an active role in guidance and support and enhance engagement between businesses and local communities. We call for businesses to take proactive actions, incorporate social responsibility into their business strategies, show respect for local cultures and customs, and contribute to local economic development, job creation, improvement of people’s livelihood, infrastructure development and stronger environmental protection. We call for communities to support law-based operations of mining businesses. We also call for economies to support rule-of-law and create a sound social environment for mining businesses to grow.
18. We express satisfaction with the efforts made by relevant economies to develop green mining standards and in the progress they have made in advancing sustainable development and combating illegal mining. We endorse the sharing of CSR best practices and encourage mining organizations and industrial associations to hold seminars and training programs in order to promote best CSR practices in the mining sector.
19. To realize the above-mentioned objectives, we agree to enhance the Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Mining mechanism, through high-level dialogues, exchanges and policy consultations, in support of the objectives of this Joint Statement.
20. We express satisfaction with and thanks to the Mining Task Force for its practical and substantial work. We agree that the Mining Task Force should formulate and implement an action plan based on this Joint Statement. At the same time, we agree to work more closely with related APEC working groups in order to play a more important role in promoting mining cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region.
21. We will present this Joint Statement to the 22nd APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting and the 26th APEC Ministerial Meeting, and call for leaders and ministers to note and support our initiatives in this Joint Statement.
22. We thank our host, the People’s Republic of China, for its wonderful organization of the meeting and warm hospitality.