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SOM Steering Committee on Economic and Technical Cooperation

APEC is a place for economies to explore creative solutions to shared challenges while learning from each other through economic and technical cooperation (ECOTECH).

In 1996, ministers adopted the Framework for Strengthening Economic Cooperation and Development to further strengthen economic and technical cooperation (ECOTECH) in APEC.  To effectively implement the ECOTECH agenda, the SOM Sub-Committee for Economic and Technical Cooperation was established in 1998.  This was later elevated to the SOM Committee on Economic and Technical Cooperation in 2002.  As part of the reform process, with effect from 2006, the ESC was transformed into the SOM Steering Committee on ECOTECH (SCE) with an enhanced mandate to strengthen the prioritization and effective implementation of ECOTECH activities by various APEC fora.

In 2009, SOM agreed to further strengthen the SCE’s policy guidance role as recommended by the SCE internal review.  In 2010, a new Framework to Guide ECOTECH activities was endorsed to guide the APEC-funded capacity building and all ECOTECH activities.

This framework identified ECOTECH Medium-Term Priorities, which are central to advancing APEC’s ECOTECH agenda and APEC leaders’ ECOTECH-related priorities.  This priorities were further refined in 2014 and  updated in 2022.

In 2020, APEC leaders endorsed the APEC Putrajaya Vision of “an open, dynamic, resilient and peaceful Asia-Pacific community by 2040, for the prosperity of all our people and future generations.” 

The document sets out three economic drivers of Trade and Investment, Innovation and Digitalization and Strong, Balanced, Secure, Sustainable and Inclusive Growth, which provide guidance to strengthen ECOTECH across APEC. In 2021, APEC leaders endorsed the Aotearoa Plan of Action (APA), which outlines objectives under the three economic drivers and identifies as well as tasks comprehensive collective actions to implement the Putrajaya Vision 2040.

The SCE plays a lead role in supporting the achievement of APEC’s vision including through the APA as well as APEC’s ECOTECH Agenda, and provides direction to SCE sub-fora on implementation matters.

The SCE coordinates APEC’s ECOTECH agenda through a diverse set of portfolios:

  1. Agricultural Technical Cooperation Working Group (ATCWG)
  2. Anti-Corruption and Transparency Experts’ Working Group (ACTWG)
  3. Emergency Preparedness Working Group (EPWG)
  4. Energy Working Group (EWG)
  5. Experts Group on Illegal Logging and Associated Trade (EGILAT)
  6. Health Working Group (HWG)
  7. Human Resource Development Working Group (HRDWG)
  8. Oceans and Fisheries Working Group (OFWG)
  9. Policy Partnership on Science, Technology and Innovation (PPSTI)
  10. Policy Partnership for Women and the Economy (PPWE)
  11. Small and Medium Enterprises Working Group (SMEWG)
  12. Telecommunications and Information Working Group (TELWG)
  13. Tourism Working Group (TWG)
  14. Transportation Working Group (TPTWG)


  • To support the achievement of APV2040 and APA objectives across the SCE and its sub-fora including through making provisions for their implementation in SCE and SCE sub-fora governance documents.
  • To strengthen implementation of APEC’s ECOTECH activities by prioritising in accordance with Leaders’ and Ministers’ commitments, coordinating and providing oversight of the work of APEC sub-fora.
  • To provide policy guidance on ways to contribute to APEC’s ECOTECH goals.
  • To coordinate and implement ECOTECH objectives and priorities set by APEC’s Economic Leaders and Ministers.
  • To implement ECOTECH-related cooperation related to the APV2040 and APA, as well as advance and coordinate ECOTECH-related projects and initiatives.


Last page update: March 2024


Lindsey MacKinnon (Ms)
Program Director

Current Activities

The SCE remains actively involved in coordinating issues across its sub-fora and between SCE sub-fora and other committees.

Activities in 2024


The first SCE meeting of 2024 was held in Lima, Peru and was chaired by Korea. The SCE also held the 19th annual SCE Committee of the Whole (SCE-COW) meeting and an informal meeting of SCE sub-fora chairs and lead shepherds. In addition, the SCE conducted business through intersessional discussions and exchanges.

Key outcomes from the meeting included a policy dialogue on ‘Understanding the Nexus Between Digital Connectivity and Formalization in the Asia Pacific’ where members and experts shared insights on policies to be included in a roadmap for the transition to the formal and global economy. Further, the 2024 APEC Bio-Circular-Green (BCG) Award was launched to recognize the achievements of individuals and organizations that have advanced sustainable and inclusive growth objectives. Three winners will officially be announced and awarded a USD 5,000 cash prize for their outstanding efforts in furthering replicable BCG economy approaches at the APEC Ministerial Meeting in Lima, Peru in November.

The SCE continued its central role in the administration of SCE sub-fora, approving the annual work plans of 10 SCE sub-fora. The SCE also benefited from voluntary updates delivered by two SCE members highlighting their domestic efforts to advance the APA’s individual actions.

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