Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son speaks at the ISOM in Hanoi on December 9 (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Peru has officially handed over the chair of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) for 2017 to Vietnam at the Informal Senior Official Meeting (ISOM) among APEC members in Hanoi on December 9.

At the event, the first among five SOMs in the APEC Year 2017, Vietnam presented four priorities it has set for the year.

The priorities are sustainable, innovative and inclusive growth; regional economic connectivity; competitiveness improvement for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs); food security and the development of sustainable farming in response to climate change.

Expressing approval of those priorities, participants said building new growth momentum is key to help APEC prove its leadership and pioneer role in boosting economic recovery and connectivity across the region, given the current slowdown in the global economy.

They proposed that APEC should promote sustainable and inclusive growth models which could produce equal benefits for everyone.

They also highlighted the necessity of organising more communication campaigns on the benefits that APEC programmes can bring to businesses and people in the region.

Chairing the meeting, Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son stated that all proposals made by participating countries are important to steering cooperation directions of APEC in the next 12 months.

The comments from APEC members will be studied and integrated in the official priorities of APEC 2017 to be passed at the first Senior Official Meeting (SOM1) slated for March 2017 in the central city of Nha Trang, he said.

Next year, Vietnam will organise about 200 APEC events across 10 major cities, with the biggest being the APEC week in Da Nang in November.-VNA