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Premier Forum Brings Together Industry and Government to Prevent Barriers to Trade

PUERTO VARAS, CHILE (August 22, 2019) – The top Asia-Pacific forum for the chemical industry – the world’s fifth largest manufacturing sector – is strengthening cooperation on regulatory affairs, in order to facilitate trade, create more jobs, and promote sustainable development.

“The chemical industry is central to many sectors of our economies, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region,” said Kent Shigetomi, Co-Chair of the APEC Chemical Dialogue, which is spearheading efforts to improve regulatory cooperation. “It is critical that government and industry cooperate with one another on key trade and regulatory policy issues, and the APEC Chemical Dialogue is at the heart of this cooperation.”

This year’s 22nd APEC Chemical Dialogue is convening, at the 3rd APEC Senior Officials’ Meetings in Puerto Varas, Chile, key stakeholders from industry to government and environment experts. Together they are stepping up efforts to promote high standards of protection for human health, safety, and the environment, and to prevent barriers to trade.

A global juggernaut that contributed in 2017 USD 5.7 trillion in global GDP – equivalent to seven percent of the world’s total – the chemical industry is particularly critical in the Asia-Pacific region, where it supports 83 million jobs, according to the American Chemistry Council.

Over two-thirds of APEC chemical trade is intra-regional, with reported exports valued at USD 2.9 trillion and reported imports valued at USD 3 trillion from 2011 to 2015.

“Chemistry supports innovative products and technologies that drive the global economy and help people live longer and healthier lives,” said Ed Brzytwa, Director of International Trade of the American Chemistry Council. “Prioritizing regulatory cooperation, adopting good regulatory practices, and aligning customs practices for chemicals will foster even more job creation and positive impacts on sustainable development.”

As Latin America faces rapid growth in the production and trade of chemicals, the dialogue is focusing this year on regulatory cooperation in this important region with experts from the region sharing lessons learned.

“Increasing regulatory cooperation, fostering innovation, and preventing barriers to trade can expand APEC’s engagement with global markets. Continued engagement will pay dividends for APEC member economies for years to come,” said Dr. Rebecca Sta Maria, Executive Director of the APEC Secretariat. “Let’s work together to create ambitious outcomes in APEC that will deliver more shared prosperity across the region.”

To learn more, download this fact sheet.

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