Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) was established in 1989 as a dynamic forum to further enhance economic growth and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific Region. APEC works in the broad areas of trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, economic and technical cooperation, to help APEC Member Economies grow and prosper. Currently, APEC has 21 Member Economies known as: Australia; Brunei Darussalam; Canada; Chile; People's Republic of China; Hong Kong, China; Indonesia; Japan; Republic of Korea; Malaysia; Mexico; New Zealand; Papua New Guinea; Peru; The Republic of the Philippines; The Russian Federation; Singapore; Chinese Taipei; Thailand; The United States of America and Viet Nam.

The Macao SAR has been granted ‘Guest Economy’ status in several APEC Working Groups since 2001. As a Guest Economy in Working Groups, the Macao SAR is free to participate in meetings. The Chair may invite Macao SAR to respond to questions and discussions in meetings, but not take part in the decision-making process. Currently, the four Working Groups that Macao participates in are:

  • Policy Partnership on Science, Technology and Innovation (PPSTI)
  • Small and Medium Enterprises Working Group (SMEWG)
  • Tourism Working Group (TWG)
  • Transportation Working Group (TPTWG)


APEC's Objectives & Goals

APEC is committed to promoting and enhancing trade and economic development in the Asia-Pacific region for the betterment of people within the region. Since its establishment, APEC has made efforts to reduce tariffs and other trade barriers across the Asia-Pacific region, creating a favourable economic environment for exports. Key to achieving APEC's vision are what are referred to as the Bogor Goals, a commitment made by APEC economies in 1994 to achieve free and open trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific by 2010 for industrialized economies and 2020 for developing economies.

As the Bogor Goals reached maturity in 2020, the 27th APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting adopted the Putrajaya Vision 2040 to guide the cooperation within APEC over the next 20 years. Its objective is to build an open, dynamic, resilient, and peaceful Asia-Pacific community by 2040, for the prosperity of all the people and future generations in the region. APEC will achieve this vision by pursuing three economic drivers: trade and investment; innovation and digitalization; and strong, balanced, secure, sustainable, and inclusive growth.


APEC's Scope of Work

  • Trade and Investment Liberalisation
  • Business Facilitation
  • Economic and Technical Cooperation (ECOTECH)


APEC's Features

  • Members are referred as “Member Economies”, not as countries
  • Decisions are made based on consensus and by promoting dialogue and equal respect for views of all participants
  • Members are not required to enter into legally binding obligations or signing of contracts to reducing trade barriers and increasing investment


Mechanism of APEC

APEC Economic Leaders’ Meetings are held once a year in the APEC host economy, in which declarations from these meetings set the policy goals for APEC. APEC Ministerial Meetings of foreign affairs and economic/trade ministers are held immediately prior to the Economic Leaders’ Meetings. Ministers consider the year’s activities, discuss important economic issues across the region and then provide recommendations for APEC Economic Leaders’ consideration. Working under direction from APEC Ministers, Senior Officials’ Meetings (SOM) implement and build up agenda in respond to Ministers’ decisions. They also guide and coordinate activities of all levels of fora, which encompass Committees, Working Groups and Special Task Groups to carry out APEC’s work and projects in specific sectors.