Thursday, March 7, 2019
Chile encourages open and constructive dialogue at First APEC Senior Officials’ Meeting
The meeting, which was presided over by SOM Chair Mathias Francke, was attended by the Director General of International Economic Affairs (DIRECON) and Vice Minister of Trade Rodrigo Yáñez.
Santiago, March 7, 2019.- Senior Officials’ Meeting Chair Mathias Franke appeared with Director General of International Economic Affairs (DIRECON) and Vice Minister of Trade Rodrigo Yáñez and the Executive Director of the APEC Secretariat, Rebecca Fátima Santa María, to inaugurate the First Senior Officials’ Meeting of APEC Chile 2019. Francke began the meeting with a clear call to maintain the cooperation and open dialogue that are characteristic of the origins of the forum.
Chile’s SOM Chair welcomed the members of the 21 economies and offered a special greeting to the new Senior Officials who joined the forum this year. His remarks were followed by those of Rodrigo Yáñez, who highlighted Chile’s intention to advocate for a return to the origins of the forum through a dialogue of consensus focused on individuals. “We need to address our differences respectfully, adopting audacious ideas and developing new initiatives to benefit the Asia-Pacific region and its people,” he said.
In this context, Yáñez stated that one of the commitments that Chile has made is to safeguard APEC’s status as a non-binding, collaborative and consensus-based forum composed of diverse economies, and which promotes cooperation and the free flow of ideas. He described the entity as a “prosperous communities of men and women with a vision of the future of the entire Pacific.”
Since it joined the forum in 1994, Chile has had the opportunity to strategically position itself in the Asia-Pacific region, which represents 66% of its total trade and 59% of the country’s foreign investment. Yáñez noted that hosting APEC offers a unique opportunity to promote free trade and investment and to take concrete steps towards deeper regional economic integration with a view to achieving sustainable and inclusive growth in the region.