Projects are a vital part of the APEC process. They help translate APEC Ministers' and Economic Leaders' policy directions into actions and create tangible benefits for people living in the Asia-Pacific region.
Projects assist member economies in building a dynamic and harmonious Asia-Pacific region by championing free and open trade and investment, promoting and accelerating regional economic integration, encouraging economic and technical cooperation, enhancing human security, and facilitating a favourable and sustainable business environment.
APEC contributes funding to around 100-150 projects each year, with a total value of over $25 million committed by APEC to projects in 2011-2012. Over 1800 projects have been undertaken since 1993, when APEC initiated project work. At any moment in time, up to 170 projects may be in implementation, The majority of projects are focused on transferring knowledge and skills between members and building capacity so that each economy can move closer towards the Bogor Goals of free and open trade and investment.
APEC projects include workshops, symposia, publications, and research. They are open to participation from all 21 member economies. As well as engaging with public and government sector organisations in the 21 economies, external stakeholder engagement is encouraged.
APEC also works to maximise the benefits of globalisation. In particular, APEC supports projects that: promote public health; improve the skills of workers; contribute to green growth; reduce the risks of and improve responses to natural disasters and emergencies; and that help small, medium and micro-sized enterprises to grow and access markets.
APEC Project Focus and Themes
In 2011-2012, APEC approved funding for 235 projects, focusing on trade-related issues, with particular focus on areas of relevance to APEC’s fora.
Projects cover a wide range of priority sectors. Each year APEC defines the key policy priorities and projects aim to contribute to these directions. Please see the Funding Criteria for APEC-Funded Projects in 2013.
In addition to cooperation for trade liberalisation, APEC also supports projects that seek to make trade and doing business easier and more efficient such as: agreeing to common standards for product testing and labeling, developing safer and more efficient transportation routes, and providing information on each member's regulatory and legislative requirements for imports and exports.
Recent themes launched as APEC projects include:
- Regional economic integration: energy management standardization, intellectual property rights, traditional knowledge protection, self-certification of origin
- Green growth: low-carbon model town , green finance , phasing out fossil fuel subsidies, smart grids
- Structural reform: regulatory impact analysis, principals of corporate governance, competition law and policy
- Capacity building for APEC’s developing members: ship and port security, trade of second generation biofuels, best practices for green ICT, infectious disease prevention
Information about individual projects can be found through the APEC Project Database.
Development of APEC’s Projects
APEC began funding projects in 1993 with three self-funded projects. Since then, the number of projects funded each year has increased to up to 150 per year. Over the same period, the funds APEC committed to projects increased from just under $1 million to over $14 million per year, depending on members’ contributions.
To implement BMC-led project management reforms and effectively build project management skills and knowledge among APEC members, the Secretariat established the Project Management Unit in 2007. The PMU brings a professionalised approach to projects and helps capacity in project management within the Secretariat and the wider APEC community. The PMU provides specialised advice and guidance to both internal and external APEC stakeholders. It provides the main link between members, Program Directors, Program Executives and the Executive Office and the Budget Management Committee (BMC) regarding project matters.
Multi Year Projects Pilot
In 2011 APEC launched a Multi Year Project (MYP) pilot initiative, for ongoing, phased projects that continue for three to five years. MYPs focus strategically on building capacity in members so that they can take full advantage of trade opportunities. The application stage for the pilot ended in early 2013. Twelve MYPs are being implemented and the pilot initiative will undergo an evaluation.
Applying for Funds information can be found here.
Implementing APEC Projects information can be found here.
APEC Project Funding Sources information can be found here.
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