Investment Experts' Group

Investment is the foundation of economic activity and a necessary prerequisite to innovation, growth of manufacturing and trade.

In 1993, APEC Leaders welcomed the report presented by the APEC Eminent Persons Group, which recommended for APEC to “adopt an Asia-Pacific Investment Code to reduce the uncertainties and transaction costs of trade and investment in the region.” Immediately after, Leaders instructed the Committee on Trade and Investment (CTI) to develop a set of non-binding investment principles. 

In 1994, the CTI established the Investment Experts Group (IEG) to fulfill this task. The IEG produced the Non-Binding Investment Principles, which were endorsed by APEC Leaders in Jakarta in 1994.  As a CTI sub-forum the IEG has worked to enhance liberalization and facilitation of investment, as well as strengthen member economies’ capacity building through economic and technical cooperation, under the authority of the CTI.

Bearing in mind the ultimate goal of economic development and prosperity of people across the APEC region, the objectives of the IEG are set as follows:

  • To undertake work related to investment and report its outcomes to the CTI
  • To address issues related to investment and to enhance the liberalization and facilitation of investment in the APEC region
  • To enhance capacity building in the area of investment through economic and technical cooperation among member economies in the APEC region
  • To support investment promotion activities of member economies to facilitate investment flows in the region

Based on these objectives, IEG reaffirms two principal pillars of its work as follows:

  1. International investment regime—principles and practices. This pillar looks at various investment issues and challenges from the perspective of international instruments such as International Investment Agreements (IIAs).
  2. Investment promotion, facilitation and retention, such as continuing the work on the Investment Facilitation Action Plan (IFAP), Investment Policy Dialogue (IPD), Investment Promotion Agency (IPA), best practice discussions and other cross cutting issues such as global value chains (GVC), public-private partnerships (PPP) and infrastructure.

APEC Non-Binding Investment Principles (NBIP)

The APEC Non-Binding Investment Principles (NBIP) demonstrates APEC’s commitment to promoting investment and addressing challenges posed by a rapidly evolving business environment. The NBIP, originally endorsed in 1994, were successfully revised in 2011.

APEC Strategy for Investment

The APEC Strategy for Investment (Appendix 7) aims to promote increased investment flows throughout the APEC region. The strategy is implemented under three main pillars: (1) Advanced Principles and Practices; (2) Facilitation; and (3) Promotion. Some of the activities under this Strategy include analytical studies on investment practices, following up on the Investment Facilitation Action Plan (IFAP), public-private dialogues on investment, capacity building and information sharing, as well as cooperation with other international organizations.

Leaders' Statement to Implement APEC Transparency Standards

The Leaders' Statement to Implement APEC Transparency Standards was endorsed on 27 October 2002 in Mexico, and an updated statement was endorsed by Leaders on 21 October 2003 in Thailand.  

In the statement, ten items for transparency standards on investment are stipulated.

Last page update: February 2018 

Current Activities

IEG Work Plan for the Next Generation Trade and Investment Issues (IEG Work Plan on NGeTIs)

IEG members developed IEG Work Plan for the Next Generation Trade and Investment Issues (IEG Work Plan on NGeTIs); both IEG and CTI endorsed this multi-year document prior to the second IEG meeting (IEG2) of 2017. The Work Plan allows IEG members to track the progress of work within IEG in examining the investment aspects of the existing and potential NGeTIs. Upon confirmation at IEG2, IEG members started to work on their selected topics based on existing modalities within APEC and consistent with members’ own priorities. Existing modalities include, but are not limited to: APEC-funded projects, self-funded projects, researching, publishing or sessions in IEG meetings—and reporting updates at every meeting in future.

Investment Facilitation Action Plan (IFAP)

In 2008, APEC Ministers endorsed an Investment Facilitation Action Plan (IFAP) that is aimed at strengthening the competitiveness and sustainability of economic growth of APEC’s member economies and making further progress toward achievement of the Bogor Goals. The IFAP includes a comprehensive prescription of actions that can be taken across a range of policy areas and has served as a valuable reference tool for improvement of the APEC investment climate. The IEG has reviewed the IFAP implementation progress and published two reports in 2013 and 2015. The IEG continued its work to move the third IFAP forward and further progress was attained in implementing the three priority themes agreed to in 2015: e-transparency, reducing investor risk, and simplifying business regulation. Through discussions at two meetings in 2016 and intersessional work, 17 out of 21 implementing economies have been specified and their updates have been submitted for the review of the APEC Policy Support Unit (PSU). In 2017, the PSU has continued its assessment work on the outcomes of implementation of the three priority themes and completed its work early in this year. The PSU’s report “IFAP Implementation to Facilitate FDI in APEC: Updates in 2016” has been published in May, 2017.

Support for the Multilateral Trading System

The IEG continues to support the multilateral trading system through discussions with external stakeholders such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and World Economic Forum (WEF) in the areas such as international investment agreements (IIAs) issues, which paved the way for the investment policy makers of each economy to take stock and utilize them in their home economies.

Investment Policy Dialogue

On 15 August 2016 in the margins of IEG2, Australia hosted the Investment Policy Dialogue on Approaches to Management of Foreign Investment: Sharing Experience Amongst APEC Investment Policy-Makers and Regulators. The purpose of the dialogue was to explore the different approaches taken to managing foreign investment and provide members with an opportunity to consider different policy options. The dialogue identified that foreign direct investment is important to all APEC members. While all economies seeks to encourage foreign investment, members recognize the interests that economies have in appropriately providing transparent rules or regulations to govern foreign investment applications. The dialogue enabled participants to consider the most liberal ways to manage these rules. Those that participated have agreed that there was ongoing interest in better understanding the way economies manage foreign investment and for IEG to consider further work and discussions on this topic. Australia led the second Investment Policy Dialogue at IEG2 in 2017, which carried the theme “communicating the benefits of investment.”

The United States also led the “Investment Promotion Agency (IPA) Best Practice Discussion” at IEG2 in 2017.

Inclusive Business in APEC Study

The self-funded project “Inclusive Business in APEC Study” was led by the Philippines through the support of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The study illustrates the current state of inclusive business models in selected APEC economies, including market potentials, constraints and necessary policy instruments for an enabling environment; and adapts a framework to guide future work on inclusive business under the APEC regional economic cooperation agenda. The full report will be published soon.

Capacity Building Workshop on Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) Prevention and Management  

This APEC-funded project was successfully conducted under the leadership of Peru. The capacity building workshop sought to assist APEC economies in setting up their own mechanisms to identify early on potential investment disputes and manage those disputes that proceed to formal arbitral proceedings. Enhancing the capacities of APEC public officials involved in the negotiation and implementation of IIAs, as well as in the management/defense of ISDS cases, will have a direct impact on how these economies approach their response to potential ISDS cases. By preparing APEC economies for the mapping out and identification of potential investment disputes and for their effective management, the institutional frameworks of these economies will be strengthened in the medium-term. This will make environments more conductive to foreign investments. The goal of this workshop was to initiate a continuous dialogue among all the relevant actors involved in the preparedness and management of ISDS cases in the APEC region.

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Achievements

Public-Private Dialogue on Investment

In 2010, the Leaders tasked the IEG with holding the Public Private Dialogue (PPD) on Investment as part of the implementation of the APEC Strategy for Investment.

APEC Non-Binding Investment Principles (NBIP)

The APEC Non-Binding Investment Principles (NBIP) demonstrates APEC’s commitment to promoting investment and addressing challenges posed by a rapidly evolving business environment. The NBIP, originally endorsed in 1994, were successfully revised in 2011.

Investment Facilitation Action Plan (IFAP)

In 2008, APEC Ministers endorsed an Investment Facilitation Action Plan (IFAP) that is aimed at strengthening the competitiveness and sustainability of economic growth of APEC’s member economies and making further progress toward achievement of the Bogor Goals.

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Resources

Events

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01 - 02 Mar

IEG Investment Experts’ Group Meeting

Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea

Contact Us

Mr Akifumi FUKUOKA

Program Director
af@apec.org

Mr Maxim BERDICHEVSKY

Convenor
Deputy Director, Investment Trade Policy
Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
maxim.berdichevsky@international.gc.ca