San Francisco is holding the APEC Summit after 2011 from 11 – 17 November 2023. It will bring leaders from 21 members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation to talk about trade and economic growth across the Pacific region.
The theme of the 2023 APEC Submit is “Creating a Resilient and Sustainable Future for All”. The current summit is chaired by US President Joe Biden.
Leaders, ministers, and officials in APEC will work across a wide range of policy areas this year, ranging from trade and investment facilitation, the digital economy, clean energy and climate, health, gender equity and equality as well as anti-corruption and food security.
What is APEC Summit?
APEC stands for Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation. It is an inter-governmental forum of 21 countries across the Pacific Rim that works towards economic cooperation by free trade in the Asia-Pacific region.
This cooperation started with 12 members in 1989 but has been growing by adding more economies from 12 to 21, including China, Russia, Japan, the US, and Australia. These member nations account for nearly 40% of the global population and almost half the world’s trade and economic growth.
The APEC Summit is held annually. The annual summit brings together heads of nations and other top economic and diplomatic leaders. The headquarters of APEC is in Singapore. It is the highest level multi-lateral bloc and the oldest forum in the Asia-Pacific region. Last year, the APEC Summit was held in Bali, Indonesia.
Updates about APEC Summit 2023
This year, the summit will be interesting to see. Chinese President Xi Jinping and USA President Joe Biden will face each other. The harsh stand of the USA against China over the years and the USA shooting the spy balloon of China has brought tension between both countries.
Russia is not likely to attend this APEC Submit due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict. White House has said that this year the APEC economies are more likely to discuss the climate issues, the post-effects of global pandemic COVID, the strained supply chain due to the ongoing conflicts, and many more.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine, China’s aggressive stance on Taiwan, and the tension in the South China region have brought a turning point to the APEC summit, exacerbating the disturbance between these APEC economies.
The APEC summit has limited scope to take steps against the ongoing conflict situation as the summit is mostly on trade and economy. It would be better to say APEC is a cooperation between the economies rather than the countries.
With globalization, the competition between the USA and China has increased. The US president is building alliances with other economies in the Asia-Pacific region to counter the economic growth of China.
The USA is growing its cooperation with India to counter China’s presence. India is also growing relations with Taiwan by signing the Taiwan-India Labor Supply pact, which may be displeasing for China.
The Israel-Hamas conflict brings different prospects for the current APEC Submit. The economies of APEC have a different stance on the current conflict. Taiwan and Hong Kong will also participate in the summit.
The USA is currently on the brink of a federal government shutdown. There are chances that the US government will run out of money on 17 November 2023. With the paucity of funds, it would be critical for the US to hold the APEC Summit in San Francisco.
The Moody Investors Service has lowered its US ranking to negative, citing the current political polarization and rising interest rates.
Therefore, it would be interesting to note how these aspects listed above can impact the summit. Also, the current summit made the APEC economies form a proposal for economic cooperation citing the Russia-Ukraine and Israel-Hamas Conflict.