WCO welcomes outcomes of the 2013 Meeting of APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade

22 April 2013

The WCO welcomes the two Statements issued at the conclusion of the 2013 Meeting of APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade that took place on 20-21 April 2013 in Surabaya, Indonesia. The Statements addressed a number of areas crucial to the further development of a “stronger, more buoyant and more robust” Asia-Pacific region.

The WCO shares the Trade Ministers’ concerns about the state of play regarding the WTO Doha Development Round, raised in the Statement on Supporting the Multilateral Trading System and WTO 9th Ministerial Conference. The WCO remains committed to assist in order to reach a satisfactory outcome. The WCO has developed an Economic Competitiveness Package which provides practical guidance on implementing a future WTO Agreement on Trade Facilitation and supports APEC’s ongoing work on regional integration.  

The WCO is pleased that the Statement by the 2013 Meeting of APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade acknowledges the role of the Organization and its standards for the simplification of Customs procedures, and is ready to support the objective of their implementation in the Asia-Pacific region.

The Statement also touches upon a variety of areas related to the work of the WCO, such as trade recovery, food security, enhancement of SME participation in global trade and the use of effective risk management and response to improve the reliability of supply chain connectivity. 

Being an active participant in Customs-related APEC meetings, such as the Sub-Committee on Customs Procedures, the Committee on Trade and Investments, the Counter-Terrorism Task Force, and the Market Access Group, as well as in different workshops, the WCO offers its instruments, tools, and best practices for their implementation. The WCO also provides technical assistance and capacity building to help with the implementation of its tools and instruments, thus contributing to the overall objective of more effectively integrating its Members into the multilateral trading system.

“The WCO reiterates its commitment to continue active engagement with APEC to support its objectives in making the region more prosperous and resilient”, commented the WCO Secretary General, Kunio Mikuriya.

The 2013 APEC Leaders’ Meeting is scheduled to be held in early October in Bali, Indonesia.