This week I will attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Finance Ministers Meeting in Hoi An, Vietnam, on 19-21 October.
APEC is the pre-eminent economic forum in the Asia-Pacific, providing an opportunity for developed and developing economies to work together on significant global and regional issues. The upcoming meeting will be an opportunity to build on the discussions I had with my counterparts at the IMF and World Bank Annual Meetings, and the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting, in Washington last week – but with a particular focus on the Asia-Pacific region.
Trade and investment links fostered by APEC have driven growth and prosperity of our region. This is particularly the case for Australia: our 26 consecutive years of economic growth have been built on open markets and on broadening and deepening linkages with the Asia-Pacific region. I will be emphasising to my APEC counterparts the importance of open markets to ensure that our region remains the engine of global growth.
I will also reaffirm Australia’s unwavering commitment and world-leading record in addressing multinational tax avoidance through implementation of the G20/OECD base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) project, which has been one of Vietnam’s priorities this year. BEPS is a global problem that requires a global solution, and APEC economies are well placed to collaborate to address this issue.
In the margins of the meeting, I will be signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Vietnam’s Minister for Finance, Mr Dinh Tien Dung, aimed at building cooperation between our countries on economic and financial issues. This MoU is a tangible expression of Australia’s commitment to deepening our engagement with our regional partners.
I will also be meeting with Vietnam’s Prime Minister, and with Finance Ministers from Singapore, Chinese Taipei and Thailand.