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Tuesday, February 26, 2019

“Chilean Villages”: The official SME showcase at APEC Chile 2019

The exhibition will showcase some of the Chile’s most representative handcrafts, cuisine and art at the hotels where the APEC technical meetings are taking place.

Santiago, February 26, 2019 - The inauguration of Chilean Villages took place today in the context of the First Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM 1) of APEC Chile 2019. The objective is to bring the forum closer to the people in order to highlight Chile’s cultural heritage to the delegates from the 21 APEC economies. The exhibition enables exporting companies to offer their products to the delegates from the 21 APEC economies. The opening was attended by the Foreign Affairs Undersecretary, Carolina Valdivia, the APEC SOM Chair, Mathias Francke and the acting director of ProChile, Rose Marie Bedecarratz.

As a result of a call made by ProChile, 50 entrepreneurs from the gourmet, beauty, handicrafts, jewelry, designer footwear and textile products sectors are taking part for free in this exhibition. They will be able to take turns displaying and selling their products at an individual stand, which could be visited by up to 500 delegates from APEC economies each day. The exhibition will continue until March 8, 2019 and is located at the Intercontinental and W hotels, where the meetings are being held.

Undersecretary Carolina Valdivia highlighted the high level of participation by women in the exhibition: "One of APEC's priority areas is Women, SMEs and Inclusive Growth, so this is a good example, as we have many exhibitors who are women and who come from small businesses. We want to show them that APEC is also a forum that can provide tangible benefits."

On this occasion, only companies from the Metropolitan Region were invited to participate. However, in each host city for Senior Officials’ Meetings during APEC Chile 2019 - Valparaiso and Puerto Varas - there will be a space reserved exclusively for local entrepreneurs to showcase their products. Chilean Villages will return to Santiago for the Leaders’ Meeting in November.

Rose Marie Bedecarratz, acting director of ProChile, stressed how important it is for delegates representing Asia-Pacific economies to be able to buy Chilean products and take them back to their home countries. "We encourage exporters to take advantage of the showcase that the APEC forum in Chile is providing them this year. It's a great opportunity to raise awareness about products that reflect the country's identity, as this event is an opportunity to show Chile to the rest of the world," she said.

About APEC

The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) is the foremost intergovernmental forum for promoting economic growth, technical and economic cooperation and facilitating and liberalizing trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific region. Created in 1989, it comprises 21 member economies including Chile, which joined in 1994.

Chile was the APEC host country 15 years ago, in 2004. 2019 also marks APEC's 30th anniversary, and the 25th anniversary since Chile joined.

APEC represents 60% of global GDP, 50% of world trade and 39% of the world's population. In 2018, Chile's trade with the APEC region grew by 14%, setting an all-time high. 

58% of investment in Chile comes from the APEC region and 69% of Chile's exports go to APEC member economies (2017).

The APEC member economies are: Australia; Brunei Darussalam; Canada; Chile; China; Hong Kong, China; Indonesia; Japan; South Korea; Malaysia; Mexico; New Zealand; Papua New Guinea; Peru; The Philippines; Russia; Singapore; Chinese Taipei; Thailand; The United States and Viet Nam.