The 21st APEC informal economic leaders' meeting, held from October 7 to 8 in Bali, Indonesia, attracted widespread attention. Themed Resilient Asia-Pacific, Global Engine of Growth, the regional economic event was viewed as a multilateral platform where leaders from the 21 member economies deliberated on and sketched out future economic development and cooperation for the Pacific rim.
APEC, which stands for Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, is seen as the largest and most influential economic forum in the region. Since its launch in 1989, the organization has promoted regional free trade and investment as well as economic cooperation. The APEC region remains a crucial player in the global economy. Its average economic growth during the past two decades surpassed the global average, with regional GDP and trade volume now accounting for 55 and 44 percent respectively of the world total. Given the global economic inertia, alongside East Asian vitality, APEC economies are expected to add weight to the global fight against the current recession.
On the opening day of the summit meeting, Chinese President Xi Jinping, who attended for the first time as head of state, stressed in his keynote speech that APEC economies need to further coordinate their macroeconomic policies and promote win-win cooperation instead of "stepping on each other's feet."
Xi's remarks are seen as a key message to APEC, as diversified interests and pursuits among developing and developed member economies have put the organization's coordinating and cohesive caliber on trial. The United States, for instance, has thrust developing APEC members into a disadvantageous position by failing to fulfill its own commitments to the organization, instead putting forward the Trans-Pacific Partnership to boost its domestic economy.
Reshaping priorities and cooperating for the same aim would be a blessing for APEC economies and make the region the real engine for a speedy recovery and growth of the world economy.