MANILA, 28 April 2015 – Preparations are in full swing for the Second APEC Senior Officials’ Meeting and Related Meetings (SOM2), and the Ministers Responsible for Trade (MRT) Meeting which will be held back-to-back in Boracay, Aklan, from 10 to 21 May, and 23 to 24 May 2015, respectively.
The world-famous Boracay Island will play host to around 1500 delegates, including Senior Officials and Trade Ministers from the 21 APEC Economies.
For this second round of the APEC Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM), APEC delegates will continue the discussions that began last December at the Informal Senior Officials’ Meeting in Manila which launched the APEC 2015 theme of “Building Inclusive Economies, Building a Better World” and which defined the APEC substantive agenda for the year ahead. This May, Senior Officials are also expected to report on the progress of agreed work plans and projects discussed at the First Senior Officials’ Meeting held last February in Clark, Pampanga.
Considered as the midpoint of the APEC 2015 year, SOM2 presents delegates with the unique opportunity to follow through on earlier commitments as well as to introduce additional measures to reinforce work on the APEC 2015 priorities: Regional Economic Integration, SMEs’ Participation in Regional and Global Markets, Investment in Human Resource Development, and Building Sustainable and Resilient Communities.
The SOM2 series of meetings begin with 37 different technical working group-level meetings that tackle trade and investment liberalization, business facilitation, and economic cooperation in the fields of Oceans and Fisheries; Food Security; Science Technology and Innovation; Higher Education; Human Resource Development; Emergency Preparedness; Internet Economy; Connectivity; Economic and Technical Cooperation; Structural Reform; Counter-Terrorism, Telecommunication; Tourism; and Trade in Services. These technical meetings will culminate in the Senior Officials’ Meeting proper on 20 to 21 May in which Senior Officials will review and build on working groups’ initiatives and recommendations. Senior Officials will thereafter report to the APEC Trade Ministers at the MRT meeting on 23 to 24 May.
Beyond the conference, the Philippines as the APEC 2015 Chair and Host, will treat delegates to a relaxed gala dinner on the white powdery sand against the backdrop of the Boracay sunset. Local island flavors will be featured at the dinner, while mythical creatures from Philippine folklore will be the theme of the cultural presentation.
The island will be transformed into a world-class convention destination as APEC Meetings will be simultaneously conducted at the Shangri-la Resort Boracay, Crown Regency Resort and Convention Center, and the Paradise Garden Resort Hotel and Convention Center.