Today US President Barack Obama hosted leaders of the of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in Honolulu, Hawaii.
With the adoption of the "Honolulu Declaration," leaders agreed to take concrete steps toward building a “seamless regional economy” that will generate growth and create jobs in three priority areas: strengthening regional economic integration and expanding trade, promoting green growth, and advancing regulatory convergence and cooperation.
Leaders agreed to address two key next generation trade and investment issues facing the region. They committed to help small and medium-sized enterprises grow and better plug into global production chains. They also committed to promote effective, non-discriminatory and market-driven innovation policies, including by not conditioning government preferences on commercial goods and services on the location of the development or ownership of intellectual property.
Economies agreed to develop by 2012 a list of environmental goods that contribute to green growth and sustainable development on which economies are resolved to reduce applied tariff rates to five percent or less by the end of 2015. Economies will also eliminate non-tariff barriers, including local content requirements that distort environmental goods and services trade. The APEC economies also decided to phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, setting up a reporting mechanism to track progress, and raised their APEC-wide energy intensity reduction target, to 45 percent by 2035.
Leaders committed to take specific steps by 2013 to implement good regulatory practices in their economies, including by ensuring internal coordination of regulatory work; assessing regulatory impacts; and conducting public consultation.
Leaders also expressed deep concerns regarding the impasse confronting the Doha Development Agenda.
“Fresh thinking involving innovative approaches is required, including possibilities that involve advancing specific parts of the Doha agenda where consensus might be reached on a provisional or definitive basis,” Leaders said in their Declaration.
Given the precarious position of the global economy, Leaders also shared their views on the state of the global economy, the sources of global growth, and what it means for job creation.
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