World Economy

APEC Members Call for Infrastructure Investment

Members discuss policies, regulation and flexibility to  help improve infrastructure.Members discuss policies, regulation and flexibility to  help improve infrastructure.

Experts from APEC member economies spoke about the need to invest in quality infrastructure at a workshop hosted by the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City.

The workshop was the second activity of APEC’s Committee of Trade and Investment held during the senior officials meeting and related meetings in the city, VNS reported.

Speaking at the workshop, Kazuko Ishigaki, director of MLITT’s international planning for the construction industry, said: “As the APEC multi-year plan on infrastructure development and investment endorsed in 2013, well-designed, sustainable and resilient infrastructure enhances economic growth, boosts productivity and provides significant positive flow-on effects.”

“That is why APEC promotes a connectivity blueprint and other related initiatives to promote infrastructure development. This is being orchestrated with global trends,” she added.

Speaking on the sidelines of the conference, she added that “it’s important to fill the financial gap at first, but because of budget constraints, it is important to make the most of the investment.”

“Governments should invest in infrastructure in a smart and effective way. If we build fragile infrastructure, it will be easily damaged by disasters like floods and earthquakes. It is also important to design infrastructure in an effective way so that we do not waste any investment,” she said.

The experts’ ideas and suggestions about improving the quality of infrastructure will be submitted to an APEC high-level meeting on quality infrastructure to be held in Tokyo in October.

Vu Thanh Son, an official of Vietnam’s Ministry of Construction,  said, with the aim to attract more foreign investors, Vietnam was making significant investments in infrastructure, adding that it needs $480 billion to develop infrastructure from now to 2020.  

Meanwhile, the second meeting of the Sub-Committee on Customs Procedures kicked off in Ho Chi Minh City, on Saturday, on the fringes of the third APEC officials meeting.

The SCCP set the 2017 target of facilitating trade and ensuring supply chain security as specified in the SCCP Collective Action Plan and the sub-committee’s work program 2017.

The three-day event will continue working on the frameworks connecting supply chains, single-window mechanism, authorized economic operator, cross-border e-commerce, partnership between customs and businesses, and information technology and risk management.

Delegates looked into the priorities of the Asia-Pacific region, such as promoting sustainable, creative and inclusive growth; enhancing regional economic connectivity; improving the competitiveness and creativity of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises; strengthening food security and sustainable agriculture in adaptation to climate change.

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