Agenda for ABAC Meeting Set

The agenda for the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) Shanghai Meeting has been set, and the ABAC Annual Report is to be presented to the leaders of APEC members soon, the Chinese host of the meeting said at a press conference in Beijing Monday.

Zhang Zhigang, vice-minister in charge of the State Economic and Trade Commission, said that the ABAC will hold its fourth meeting of 2001 in east China's Shanghai from October 18-21.

During the meeting, the annual ABAC dialogue with APEC leaders will take place on September 20. Chinese President Jiang Zemin will make an opening speech at the event. APEC leaders will answer questions raised by the heads of ABAC task forces during the dialogue.

The ABAC Shanghai Meeting is expected to suggest ways to achieve common development through market opening, capacity building and full participation.

China will host the meeting. China appointed Qin Xiao, vice- chairman of China International Trust and Investment Corp. (CITIC), as chairman of the event.

Qin said that as the official voice of the private sector within APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation), the ABAC meeting will focus on four areas, including the slowdown of the world economy and increasing financial risks, the early start of a new round of World Trade Organization (WTO) talks, the prompt realization of the Bogor goals and the benefits and costs of globalization.

He said that ABAC will also put forward 22 suggestions to APEC leaders in such fields as finance, trade and investment, technology and small- and medium-sized enterprises.

Established in 1995, the ABAC is the only permanent organ for the business sector in the APEC. The ABAC held separate meetings in the United States, Russia and Singapore earlier this year. The fourth ABAC meeting will be held in conjunction with the informal meeting of APEC leaders in Shanghai in October.

Zhang said preparations for the informal meeting of APEC leaders are nearly complete. He said the State Economic and Trade Commission will work closely with other authorities including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China to ensure the success of the meeting and dialogue between ABAC and APEC leaders.

(Xinhua News Agency 09/25/2001)

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