APEC’s top finance officials yesterday discussed a wide range of financial policies, seeking joint efforts to boost the fiscal policy reform as they convened together in Hanoi to discuss cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region.
The tabled topics “at the meeting yesterday were “promoting public finance efficiency and sustainability to achieve stable and efficient revenue sources” and “financial sector reform so as to better attract capital inflows”.
Main talks at the first day of the two-day APEC Finance minister’s Meeting (FMM 13) went deep into exchange rate flexibility, demand growth, challenges caused by aging populations, the volatility of the world oil prices, the potential threat of a bird flu pandemic, and global climate change, according to an official APEC statement.
APEC finance ministers and central bankers were also discussing measures to thwart terrorism and other such illegal funding for weapons and such like at the meeting.
Speaking at the opening of the FMM 13, prime minister Nguyen Tan Dung said these challenges required APEC member economies to formulate a comprehensive and universally agreed upon set of policies for specific joint actions.
Dung said that the meeting’s key topics were very relevant to APEC member economies in general. He added that to achieve strong development, the first and foremost requirement for APEC economies was to strengthen the efficiency and sustainability of macro policies, including fiscal policy.
The meeting, also attended by representatives from the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the Asian Development Bank, was due to study the various member economies’ efforts to reform their tax systems and strengthen their financial services sector.
Ministers also pledged to step up the fight against global terrorism and its financing, money laundering, and other such negative abuses of regional financial systems. They are considering a statement on preventing money flows that maybe used to finance the proliferation of WMD (weapons of mass destruction).
Beside financial issues, delegates also called for renewed global free trade talks.
It’s going to be very important that the finance ministers this creatively when they go Rome about how to put a real impetus into the Doha Round, US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson told reporters on September 7.
The meting is set to call for the resumption to the World Trade Organisation’s Doha Round free trade talks that collapsed in July, according to the draft joint communiqu?.
The finance ministers’ joint statement will be issued today.