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The Action Plan on Rural-Urban Development to Strengthen Food Security and Quality Growth (AP) is intended to build on the Strategic Framework on Rural-Urban Development to Strengthen Food Security and Quality Growth (SF), fulfilling the APEC Food Security Roadmap Towards 2020 and the 2014 APEC Connectivity Blueprint. The AP will promote a learning agenda for the APEC region on rural-urban development as well as a more coordinated effort at addressing the food security and quality growth challenges brought about by a rapidly urbanizing region. The AP will be executed by the Policy- Partnership on Food Security (PPFS). PPFS will work to ensure alignment of the AP activities with related APEC and other international fora.


We are rapidly moving toward a majority-urban world, with urban areas accounting increasingly for the predominant share of food consumption in the Asia-Pacific region. According to estimates of the World Bank, the APEC urban population is expected to grow from 1.77 billion in 2014 to 2.38 billion in 2050, which represents an increase from 61 percent to 77 percent of the total population. Asia’s urban population will grow from 48 to 64 percent, while Latin America’s will rise from 80 to 90 percent. Urban growth, together with economic inequality, and urban rural linkages, mean that food insecurity and poverty in cities will also become an increasing concern, alongside poverty in rural areas. This will create an additional burden on vulnerable populations, particularly women, children and the aging population, as these groups are hit hardest by poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition. The urbanization process and the transformation of agriculture, aquaculture, food systems and rural spaces present challenges and opportunities for inclusive growth and poverty eradication; economic, environmental and social sustainability; and food security and nutrition.

Diets in the APEC region are also in transition. In developing Asian and Latin-American economies 65-75 percent of urban food expenditure is on high-value, non-grain food products. Furthermore, about 60-75 percent of those expenditures go to food that are processed to varying degrees. Food continues to be produced predominantly in rural areas leaving urban populations to depend on food purchases. Urbanization has thus led to the need for rural transformation particularly as it relates to on-farm and off-farm employment opportunities for youth, innovative technologies across the value chain, as well as the fast growth in the volume ofp food moving through rural-urban value chains. Furthermore, natural disasters and extreme weather events, including those related to climate change could impact agriculture, aquaculture and fisheries, infrastructure and supply chains connecting rural and urban areas. As a result, there is a need for a holistic and integrated focus on rural-urban linkages and approaches in order to fully address the challenges and maximize the opportunities presented by rural transformation and sustainable urban development.


The key objectives of the AP are to: 

Increase knowledge, information, and experience-sharing regarding good practices and lessons learned.

Utilize current APEC structure to provide means for APEC economies to better share experiences and promote economic cooperation to enhance food security and quality growth.

Enhance capacities of APEC economies to address rural- urban linkages, in order to improve food security and quality growth. 

General Approach 

The AP calls for member-economies to develop activities based on the strategies outlined in the Strategic Framework and to consider the role of private sector in those activities. The actions are to be voluntary and member-economies have the discretion to undertake all or some of the activities based on their domestic circumstance.

The AP aims to address challenges associated with rural-urban development and food security by pursuing four concurrent areas, as determined in the Strategic Framework:

  1. Inclusive economic development
  2. Sustainable natural resource management
  3. Social aspect
  4. Administrative efficiency

As the chief coordinating and executing body, PPFS will oversee and manage the AP. In this capacity PPFS is responsible for providing guidance on the appropriateness of activities to be developed and proposed under this AP through the regular review and scoring of concept notes; this should include identifying activities that are appropriate within the scope of the PPFS and not duplicative of the efforts of other APEC working groups and other international fora,

Key Actions

Economies are encouraged to carry out actions that move from 1) consolidating and disseminating knowledge on rural-urban linkages for food security and quality growth; to 2) sharing best practices and lessons learned; and finally, to 3) piloting new policies, partnerships, projects and programs to improve food security and quality growth across the rural-urban continuum. 

Activities to accomplish these key actions could include:

  • Stocktaking of economy-level analysis of policies/programs
  • Developing and operating APEC web-based information systems
  • Organizing regional/economy-level workshops
  • Conducting regional-level dialogues
  • Collaborating with and leveraging partnerships with relevant APEC sub-fora, international/ regional entities
  • Conducting  regional/economy-level studies
  • Conducting economy-level feasibility studies
  • Organizing capacity-building activities
  • Consolidating and developing toolkits
  • Piloting models of rural-urban development
  • Piloting regional/economy-level public-private partnerships
  • Establishing and operating APEC multi-stakeholder platforms

These activities should align with the four concurrent themes from the SF as listed under the General Approach. 

Monitoring and Evaluation

The PPFS will monitor progress toward meeting the objectives and goals of the Strategic Framework and AP over the course of 2018. As needed, PPFS will provide additional focus to the work stream to encourage collaboration and knowledge sharing on more specified components of rural-urban development in an effort to make substantial progress in key areas.

Living Document 

The PPFS will review, deliberate and update the AP for subsequent years of implementation. The review and updating process can be flexible and should be based upon the progress made on the most recent version of the AP. Throughout the year, activities can be added or revised by member economies. 

Appendix: Potential activities during 2018-2020




Potential activities

Strategic Framework Areas

Potential leading economies


Proposed Timeframe


Consolidating and disseminating knowledge to reduce food loss and waste, and promoting food safety and quality across the food value chain, through applying innovative programs and policies in the context of rural-urban development

Inclusive economic development

Chinese Taipei



Consolidating and disseminating knowledge, policies and regulations on urban agriculture

Inclusive economic development




Developing and operating APEC web-based information system, within the Asia-Pacific Information Platform on Food Security (APIP), on food production, distribution and finance

Inclusive economic development

Japan in cooperation with Economies



Organizing workshops to share best practices on rural governance

Administrative efficiency




Conducting economy-level study on rural labor transformation

Social aspect

Viet Nam



Piloting value chain models for local specialties in Vietnam

Inclusive economic development

Viet Nam



Organizing workshop on PPP in agriculture to share good practice on enabling rural- urban linkages

Inclusive economic development




Organizing workshop on sharing knowledge and practices on sustainable agriculture development in the context of Sufficiency Economy Philosophy (SEP)

Sustainable natural resources management