19 Nov 2020
The Prime Minister delivered a Keynote Address on “ASEAN’s Place in APEC’s Future” at the virtual APEC CEO Dialogues 2020, calling upon CEOs across the Asia-Pacific to join hands in driving the post-COVID-19 economic recovery, while drawing attention to Thailand’s strength in regional connectivity and ability to adjust and respond swiftly to the COVID-19 pandemic as well as looking forward to Thailand’s APEC host year in 2022.
On 19 November 2020, at 14.30 hrs., Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha, Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, delivered a Keynote Address on “ASEAN’s Place in APEC’s Future” at the virtual APEC CEO Dialogues 2020.
The Prime Minister called upon CEOs across the Asia-Pacific to join hands in driving the post-COVID-19 economic recovery and build back better a new Asia-Pacific region that is robust, resilient that leaves no one behind. APEC and ASEAN can leverage on each other’s strengths, particularly the existing connectivity networks be it physical, institutional or digital connectivity, as well as the ability to adjust quickly to changes, such as in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. The works towards achieving free and open trade and investment carried out by each forum could also complement one another, especially with the recent signing of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) between ASEAN members and its five dialogue partners.
The Prime Minister also drew attention to Thailand’s strength in regional connectivity by highlighting projects such as the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), the Thai Bridge Project, and Laem Chabang Seaport, that will be connected to other international logistic hubs. He highlighted Thailand’s ability to adjust and respond swiftly to the COVID-19 pandemic, in particular, its well-functioning public health system and its uninterrupted role as a world major food producer and exporter. Lastly, the Prime Minister urged both the public and private sectors to support MSMEs, women, young people and vulnerable groups so they can take part in the global economy, through promoting financial inclusion and access to technology. These key areas will be taken forward to Thailand’s APEC host year in 2022.
The APEC CEO Dialogues 2020 is hosted by the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), under Malaysia’s leadership. It is a platform for APEC Economic Leaders and business leaders to discuss issues of significant concern in the Asia-Pacific region. Other APEC Economic Leaders participating include the Presidents of China, Indonesia and Chile as well as the Prime Ministers of Malaysia, Singapore, Japan and New Zealand. Business leaders from leading companies including Facebook, Microsoft, FedEx, Axa, ExxonMobil and Petronas, academics and journalists also joined the discussions.