Enhancing cooperation by keeping markets open under a “functioning” rules-based trading system will help countries keep inflation in check, according to Trade Secretary Alfredo E. Pascual.
Pascual joined trade and foreign ministers from the Asia-Pacific region for the 33rd Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministerial Meeting last Thursday.
During the meeting, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said Friday that Pascual underscored the need to enhance cooperation and promote sustainable trade and development in the middle of inflation and other uncertainties across the globe.
With this, he noted that it is imperative to keep the market open for trade and investment under a “functioning” rules-based trading system.
“Respect and observance of the rules-based trading system is a pre-requisite to a conducive open market and a crucial element in promoting trade and sustainable development”, the Trade chief said.
He also urged the ministers to observe the decisions and agreements made at the 12th World Trade Organization (WTO) ministerial meeting held last June in Geneva, Switzerland.
According to the Trade department, Pascual also expressed the Philippines’s commitment to implement the Fisheries Subsidies Agreement, and the country’s active engagement in the agriculture negotiations and the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) waiver, among others.
In a joint ministerial statement issued by APEC member-countries in Bangkok, Thailand, on Friday, the 21-member intergovernmental forum discussed its achievements and priorities in 2022 and provided guidance on its future work.
Among these priorities is reaffirming the importance of and commitment to the rules-based multilateral-trading system with the WTO.
“We recognize the important role of the multilateral trading system to support economic recovery from global challenges, in particular through the facilitation of the movement of and access to food as well as essential goods and services related to the Covid-19 pandemic,” APEC said in a statement on Friday.
As the 21-member intergovernmental forum welcomes the successful outcomes of the Twelfth WTO Ministerial Conference (MC12) held last June 12 to 17 in Geneva, Switzerland, the APEC said it commits to working “constructively” to fully implement the MC12 outcomes and will continue to work towards positive outcomes at the Thirteenth Ministerial Conference (MC13).
In June, the 164 member-countries of the WTO approved a package that contained at least seven declarations and decisions during its high-level 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12) in Geneva, Switzerland.