APEC member economies and private sector stakeholders are meeting in Russia over the next two weeks to further reduce trade barriers and boost food supplies to satisfy the needs of businesses and consumers.

The further expansion of trade and strengthening of food security, two of APEC’s 2012 priorities, are vital to ensuring sustainable growth of the 21st century economy and among the key issues in a cluster of APEC ministerial, senior official and working group meetings being held in Kazan, Russia from 20 May-5 June. The meetings include significant business community participation and input.

Trade ministers will seek to hatch strategies for resisting protectionism amid global uncertainty and expanding trade, paying particular attention to environmental goods, which is in line with APEC’s green growth and sustainable development objectives.

Meanwhile, APEC agricultural ministers will look to identify areas where they can cooperate with respect to measures that support food production and access and mitigate against price volatility.

To advance the promotion of trade and investment liberalization and regional economic integration, delegates will seek to take forward initiatives that foster more reliable, efficient transport and logistics systems by building on work that has already helped decrease overall business costs across the Asia-Pacific by five percent and resulted in savings of US$58.7 billion between 2007 and 2010.

In similar fashion, delegates will pursue joint initiatives that encourage effective, non-discriminatory and market-driven innovation vital to bolstering the products, services and business models of tomorrow and with it, buoy members’ long-term economic growth.

The results of the APEC ministerial, senior official and working group meetings will be reported during the APEC 2012 Leaders Meeting in Vladivostok on 8-9 September.

# # #

For more information, please contact David Hendrickson +65 9371 8901 at drh@apec.org or Michael Chapnick +65 9647 4847 at mc@apec.org.

More details about APEC’s 2012 priorities and initiatives for the year can be found on www.apec.org or www.apec2012.ru.

Additional details about APEC meetings, events, projects and publications can be found at www.apec.org. You can also follow APEC on Twitter and join us on Facebook.