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Coordination Mechanism in APEC Urged

China on Wednesday proposed the establishment of a coordination mechanism in transport industry to the gathering of transportation ministers of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Bali, Indonesia.

"To provide a safer environment for trade and investment liberalization, we propose the establishment of a coordination mechanism for the regular exchange of safety and security information in the APEC region," said Yang Yuanyuan, Minister of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).

He made the remarks during the 4th APEC Transportation Ministerial Meeting attended by ministers or their representatives of 21 APEC economies.

Minister Yang said such coordination will help enhance safety and security cooperation among APEC members and improve the overall transport safety and security in the region.

Another China's proposal in the three-day meeting is for the APEC to advance transport market liberalization independently and in coordination.

In view of the diverging levels of economic development and regulatory system of APEC economies, "we maintain that economies set their own pace and manner for liberalization in light of their own specific conditions," Yang said.

In the meantime, "we need to step up coordination with one another in the process of the liberalization so as to facilitate the free movement of trade and investment in this region," he added.

Yang stressed that China attaches great importance to cooperation and development in the Asia-Pacific transport industry and supports the overall objectives of APEC in the field of transport.

"Recent years have witnessed China's continued contribution to the industry in this region by enhancing air safety and security, opening up air transport market and stepping up cooperation with APEC economies," he said.

He noted that last year, total air traffic turnover volume in China reached nearly 17 billion tons/kilometer with 1,155 scheduled air routes connecting China's domestic cities and 72 cities in 32 countries.

In the same year, the Chinese civil aviation industry underwent the most profound reform in more than 20 years, with the consolidation of air carriers and transfer airports to local governments, he said.

While saying that China's air transport system is moving toward greater safety, openness and dynamism, Yang underlines that China's transport industry depends on cooperation amongst the Asia-Pacific economies.

(Xinhua News Agency July 29, 2004)

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