Chronology of APEC SME Ministerial Meetings

The first APEC SME Ministerial Meeting was held in Osaka, Japan, from October 22-23, 1994 to discuss the role and importance of SMEs, direction of policies of SMEs, ways to foster the growth of SMEs and recommendations for APEC action.

The second APEC SME Ministerial Meeting occurred in Adelaide, Australia, from September 14-15, 1995.

The third APEC SME Ministerial Meeting was held in Cebu, the Philippines, from September 5-6, 1996.The meeting focussed on ways to encourage greater private section participation.

The fourth APEC SME Ministerial Meeting was held in Ottawa, Canada, from September 18-19, 1997. A joint statement emphasized the importance of policies and programmes that support SMEs.The ministers also endorsed the 1997 APEC SME Individual Action Plan in the meeting.

The fifth APEC SME Ministerial Meeting was held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, from September 7-8, 1998. The ministers reviewed the work of the Policy Level Group on the SME and discussed the Integrated Plan of Action for SME Development, the impact of the regional financial instability on SMEs and the importance of electronic commerce to SMEs.

The sixth APEC SME Ministerial Meeting was held in Christchurch, New Zealand from April 26-28, 1999 to discuss the key issues affecting SME growth.

The Seventh APEC SME Ministerial Meeting was held in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam from June 22-23, 2000.The meeting discussed matters concerned with responding to the needs of APEC SMEs, focussing on four main issues: capacity building of APEC SMEs, enabling APEC SMEs to capitalize on electronic commerce, making financial and capital markets more accessible to SMEs and harnessing diversity for shared economic prosperity.

(China Daily 08/29/2001)

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