SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA—Finance Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno has taken part in discussions at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Business Advisory Council (ABAC) on November 16, 2023 in San Francisco, California to advance the Philippines’ business interests with the private sector.
The ABAC is the private sector arm of APEC mandated to advise leaders and other APEC officials on issues of interest to business in an annual dialogue. The council is supported by the ABAC International Secretariat based in Manila, Philippines.
“Private sector participation plays an indispensable role in the Philippines’ development journey. The Marcos, Jr. administration stands ready to support and collaborate with the private sector in transforming the Philippine business landscape into one that is genuinely inclusive and sustainable,” Secretary Diokno said.
With the theme of Equity, Sustainability, and Opportunity for 2023, the ABAC formulates recommendations to advance trade and investment policies that tackle critical challenges such as climate change, living standards, and digital transformation.
New Zealand, Brunei Darussalam, and the Philippines hosted this year’s ABAC meetings.
In her address to the APEC Business Advisory Council Meeting alongside APEC leaders and CEOs, US Vice President Kamala Harris emphasized how public and private sector collaboration is essential in driving economies forward in a way that invests in innovation, strengthens economies, and uplifts the human condition.
“In our interconnected and interdependent world, convenings like these are critical to ensure prosperity and security for all our economies,” she said.
Meanwhile, Chair of the 2023 APEC Business Advisory Council Dominic Ng called on APEC economies to strengthen collaboration in response to global challenges such as inflation, rising living costs, and uncertainties from climate and technological trends, which he highlighted as the top factors affecting marginalized groups disproportionately.
“Faced with these challenges and others, APEC economies must collaborate more than ever to promote equity, sustainability, and create opportunity. ABAC is ready to support these efforts and help achieve the Putrajaya Vision 2040,” he said.
APEC economies share the vision of an open, dynamic, resilient, and peaceful Asia-Pacific community by 2040 through the pursuit of trade and investment, innovation and digitalization, and inclusive growth for the prosperity of all people and future generations.