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Cebu News

APEC Cebu Action Plan launched

The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - The Philippines’ finance chief has expressed hope the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation will consider the Cebu Action Plan as a “living body of continuing work,” as the region seeks to build inclusive economies and financial buffers.

Finance ministers from the 21-economy bloc formally launched yesterday the CAP, a financial development road map for APEC, during the last day of the 22nd Finance Ministers’ Meeting held in Lapu-Lapu City.

“The Cebu Action Plan that we launched today is the work of a region facing forward in steadfast cooperation amid complex challenges and opportunities,” Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima said yesterday.

“We hope the CAP emerges as the lasting legacy of the Philippines’ hosting,” he said.

The 10-year road map, which will be submitted to APEC lea-ders, calls for measures to promote financial integration, advance fiscal reforms and transparency, accelerate infrastructure development and financing, and enhance financial resiliency.

The CAP is said to be non-binding and voluntary, which means that it’s up to the member economies whether they put it into action or not.

Several initiatives are identified under the CAP and are envisioned to be adopted by APEC members on a voluntary basis.

But officials believe APEC nations see the CAP as necessary to pursue, considering that it has gained broad support from the members.

CAP’s deliverables include the short-term initiatives (one year), medium-term (two to four years) and long-term (five to 10 years).

The four-pillar road map aims to make the region’s financial markets more integrated to boost trade and investment.

Finance ministers also agreed that fiscal transparency and reforms are necessary in increasing public investments across the region.

APEC economies also committed to enhance financial resilience by developing financial markets.

“Finance ministers are confident that resiliency can be bolstered through the development of innovative disaster risk financing and insurance mechanisms and other risk transfer instruments available through the capital markets,” the Department of Finance said in a statement.

The foreign ministers also noted the importance of infrastructure development and financing in improving connectivity within the region, and recognized the role of the private sector in boosting infrastructure investments.

Yesterday, APEC finance ministry officials unveiled a marker to commemorate the CAP. The mar-ker, a two-meter sculpture of pounded brass on four black granite pedestals, represents the CAP pillars.

The 23rd Finance Ministers’ Meeting will be held in Lima, Peru in October 2016. Peru is next year’s APEC host. – Carlo S. Lorenciana/RHM (FREEMAN)

 

ACIRC APEC ASIA-PACIFIC ECONOMIC COOPERATION CAP CARLO S CEBU ACTION PLAN DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE FINANCE FINANCE MINISTERS FINANCE SECRETARY CESAR PURISIMA FINANCIAL
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