APEC Leaders and Ministerial Endorsements

APEC Economic Leaders (Heads of State)

2016 APEC Economic Leaders Meeting Declaration
Lima, Peru, 20 November 2016

We recognize that micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) are an essential component for economies to achieve quality growth and prosperity. As sources of innovation and employment, MSMEs are also well placed to promote entrepreneurship, to benefit from structural reform and to advance sustainability in our economies, maximizing the impact of policies, strategies and best practices. Strengthening of MSMEs will imply concrete progress in...strengthening ethical business practices to support MSMEs’ growth and cross border trade..."

Link: http://www.apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Leaders-Declarations/2016/2016_aelm.aspx

2014 APEC Economic Leaders Meeting Declaration
Beijing, China, 11 November 2014

41. We welcome efforts to strengthen SMEs' cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region, involve SMEs in APEC production and supply chains, promote ethical business practices, as well as to empower their capacity to operate in an international market.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Leaders-Declarations/2014/2014_aelm.aspx

2012 APEC Economic Leaders Meeting Declaration – Annex E
Vladivostok, Russia, 8-9 September 2012

We will work together and with international and regional development institutions to aggressively combat fraud, corruption, and the misuse of public resources. We will also support the efforts of respective member economies to build capacity to combat corruption by strengthening anti-corruption bodies, the rule of law, fiscal transparency and accountability; by reforming public procurement systems; by developing and promoting mechanisms that support effective return of recovered assets; and by encouraging the implementation of high standard codes of ethics.

We recognize the important role of business and public-private partnerships in promoting the elaboration of codes of conduct in the private sector and measures to fight corruption, especially measures that support the promotion of ethical business practices in interactions between government, business and other stakeholders. We welcome efforts by our SME Ministers, industries and academics to promote voluntary, industry-specific APEC principles that aid in this effort.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Leaders-Declarations/2012/2012_aelm.aspx

APEC Ministers (Foreign and Trade)

2016 APEC Ministerial Meeting Declaration
Lima, Peru, 18 November 2016

We welcome the outcomes of the third APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Forum, notably the launch of the ethical business frameworks bringing together diverse stakeholders in a new model to eliminate unethical business practices across healthcare systems.  We reaffirm the commitment by APEC economies to enhance work with third party intermediaries.

Link: http://www.apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Annual-Ministerial-Meetings/Annual/2016/2016_amm.aspx

2015 APEC Ministerial Meeting Declaration
Manila, The Philippines, 17 November 2015

90. We welcome the progress of the APEC Business Ethics for SME Initiative in addressing unethical practices in sectors of export interest to MSMEs, doubling the number of medical devices and biopharmaceutical industry association codes of ethics from 33 in 2012 to 66 in 2015. We welcome the APEC Guide to Implement Multi-Stakeholder Ethical Collaborations in these sectors and encourage member economies to advance the goals of the Nanjing Declaration to Promote Ethical Business Environments through 2020.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Annual-Ministerial-Meetings/Annual/2015/2015_amm.aspx

2014 APEC Ministerial Meeting Declaration
Beijing, China, 8 November 2014

61. We endorse the outcomes of the first APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Forum in the Nanjing Declaration to Promote Ethical Business Environments in the Medical Device and Biopharmaceutical Sectors (2014-2020)…We welcome the progress in developing and implementing codes of ethics in member economies to create ethical business environments that support innovation and sustainable growth, especially for SMEs.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Annual-Ministerial-Meetings/Annual/2014/2014_amm.aspx

2013 APEC Ministerial Meeting Declaration
Bali, Indonesia, 5 October 2013

91. We reaffirmed the importance and the need to enhance prevention and enforcement in addressing corruption, bribery and other financial crimes and illicit trade that imperil our security and prosperity agenda, including the safeguarding of public assets, natural resources, and human capital. We also reaffirmed our commitment to create ethical business environments that support sustainable economic growth, in particular by strengthening ethical standards, and we encouraged all stakeholders to implement APEC’s high standard principles for codes of business ethics. We applauded the Anti-Corruption and Transparency Working Group (ACTWG)’s continued leadership in collaborating with other APEC fora. We further committed to establish among member economies an “APEC Network of Anti-Corruption Authorities and Law Enforcement Authorities (ACT-NET)”, under the auspices of ACTWG to promote networking and foster relationship-building among anti-corruption and law enforcement officials who can assist one another in detecting, investigating and prosecuting corruption and domestic and foreign bribery, money laundering, and illicit trade cases; to provide a forum that can facilitate bilateral and multilateral discussions of such cases, as appropriate; and to facilitate the sharing of expertise and experiences in detecting, investigating and prosecuting such cases (see Annex D).

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Annual-Ministerial-Meetings/Annual/2013/2013_amm.aspx 

2012 APEC Ministerial Meeting Declaration
Vladivostok, Russia, 5-6 September 2012

46. We recognize the importance of the development and adoption of innovative practices among small-, medium-, and micro-sized enterprises (SMMEs) in order to create a non-discriminatory and market-driven innovation environment in the Asia-Pacific region. We recognize the profound role of SMMEs in generating innovative ideas and instruct officials to undertake additional work to support innovative SMMEs. We reaffirm our commitment to make it easier for SMMEs to do business in the region; address trade and investment barriers that impact SMMEs; and promote trade, economic, information and technical exchanges, and cooperation; and enhance the international competitiveness among SMMEs in the region. We also welcome progress in the implementation of APEC principles for voluntary codes of business ethics and look forward to further APEC efforts to strengthen ethical business practices through capacity building activities. 

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Annual-Ministerial-Meetings/Annual/2012/2012_amm.aspx

2010 APEC Ministerial Meeting Declaration
Yokohama, Japan, 10-11 November 2010

44. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are a significant source of prosperity and employment, and a major contributor to innovation, and thus are a growth engine of the Asia-Pacific region.  We welcomed the APEC SMEs Ministerial Meeting in October in Gifu, Japan, that stressed the importance of SMEs' participation in high-growth sectors and access to global markets.  We also welcomed the "Gifu Initiative" as a concrete action package of APEC SME policies which will ensure SMEs' further growth and development. We also welcomed steps taken to improve SME's crisis management abilities and understanding of the ethical business practices needed to sustain participation in international trade, and look forward to the development of codes to improve better align industry practices across APEC economies.  We also instructed officials to take steps to identify and address barriers that SMEs face in trading in the Asia-Pacific region.  We agreed with the SME Ministers that these efforts should commence or be enhanced as soon as possible, based on the recognition that SMEs' continued growth and development is a key to realize the APEC Leaders' Growth Strategy.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Annual-Ministerial-Meetings/Annual/2010/2010_amm.aspx

APEC Small and Medium Enterprise Ministers

2016 APEC Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Statement
Lima, Peru, 9 September 2016

16. We congratulated the United States on the successful outcomes of the APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Initiative in strengthening ethical business practices in key sectors. Heightened and aligned ethical standards through collective action free SMEs from the high costs of corruption and support their ability to access global markets. We congratulated Peru on the conclusion of its Consensus Framework for Multi-Stakeholder Ethical Collaboration in the biopharmaceutical and medical device sectors, bringing together relevant stakeholders in the healthcare system under a common platform. We urged APEC economies to implement similar Frameworks as endorsed under the APEC Nanjing Declaration and continue the full adoption of APEC Principles for codes of ethics as instructed by APEC Ministers and Leaders, and welcomed enhanced work with third party intermediaries. We affirmed the continuing work of the engineering and construction sector to undertake initiatives for SMEs to combat corruption. We supported improved capacity-building at ministries relevant to infrastructure, the examination of specific ways to streamline government processes – including increased use of automation – to improve transparency, the development of an APEC common baseline for ethics self-certification programs, and the establishment of a public-private implementation team to advise Ministers on additional steps to improve the efficient and transparent delivery of vital infrastructure. We extended our appreciation to Peru for hosting the 3rd APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Forum in 2016 and look forward to the 4th APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Forum in Viet Nam.

Link: http://www.apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Small-and-Medium-Enterprise/2016_sme.aspx

2015 APEC Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Statement
Iloilo, Philippines, 25 September 2015

15. We agree that corruption and unethical business practices act as a significant market access barrier for MSMEs, which disproportionately impact on their ability to succeed. We agree that APEC economies must continue to address these barriers, as they undermine innovation, job growth, economic stability and cross-border trade. We commend the progress of the APEC Business Ethics for SME Initiative in addressing unethical practices in sectors of export interest to MSMEs. We congratulate the medical device and biopharmaceutical sectors for achieving the Nanjing Declaration’s goal of doubling the number of industry associations that have adopted the Code of Ethics -- from 33 to 66.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Small-and-Medium-Enterprise/2015_sme.aspx

2014 APEC Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Declaration
Nanjing, China, 5 September 2014

Facilitating Ethical Business Environments for SMEs

20. We reiterated the importance of strengthening ethical business practices in key sectors for APEC SMEs and their partners in the supply chain. Ethical business practices facilitate environments that free SMEs from the high costs of corruption, permit sustainable economic growth, and support SMEs access to global markets. We congratulate the Business Ethics for APEC SMEs Initiative for concluding its fifth year, supporting the successful development of 18 new codes of ethics across 9 APEC economies where they previously did not exist and extending the APEC Principles to nearly 14,000 companies, of which over 8,000 are SMEs.

21. We welcomed the APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Forum to build stakeholder capacity to implement the APEC Principles and to facilitate multi-stakeholder collaboration. We endorsed the “Nanjing Declaration to Promote Ethical Business Environments in the Medical Device and Biopharmaceutical Sectors (2014-2020)” and extended our support to the achievement of its goals, including the call on APEC member economies to double the number of codes of ethics between 2012 and 2015, working toward further implementation of the APEC Principles by 2020. We expressed our support for the Manila Declaration to advance implementation of APEC Principles for the Construction and Engineering Sector and we encouraged SMEs to utilize the new APEC Business Ethics Web Portal to enhance their ethics compliance knowledge and capacity building skills.
22. We extended our appreciation to the Philippines for hosting the 2nd APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Forum in 2015 and encouraged the convening of this Forum on an annual basis.

Strengthening Dialogue with the Business Sector

27. We recognized the wide inclusion of private sectors in SMEWG activities, in particular in the multi-year project on Improving Natural Disaster Resilience of APEC SMEs to Facilitate Trade and Investment, and the multi-year project on Business Ethics Capacity Building for SMEs in Medical Devices, Bio-Pharmaceutical and Construction Sectors.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Small-and-Medium-Enterprise/2014_sme.aspx

2014 Small and Medium Enterprises Ministers
Nanjing Declaration on Promoting Innovative SME Development
Nanjing, China, 5 September 2014

Improving the policy environment for SME innovation

12. Promote economic growth and create jobs as well as provide a favorable environment for innovation. For example, support the APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Initiative, notably implementation of the Initiative’s Nanjing Declaration to Promote Ethical Business Environments in the Medical Device and Biopharmaceutical Sectors and Manila Declaration for the Construction and Engineering Sector, convening an annual APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Forum to advance the adoption, and implementation of high standard APEC principles for codes of ethics.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Small-and-Medium-Enterprise/2014_sme_nanjing_declaration.aspx

2013 APEC Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Declaration
Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia, 7 September 2013

Share Recognition on the Importance of Enhancing SME Global Competitiveness

6. We appreciate the effort under taken by APEC member economies to enhance SME Global Competitiveness among others the Daegu Initiative to promote innovative SMEs and embracing Business Ethics to enhance SMEs’ competitiveness.

Sub-Theme 3: Empowering SMEs to Expand to International Market

17. We appreciate the capacity building train-the-trainer workshop hosted by Malaysia and the United States to make codes of conduct in the medical device, biopharmaceutical, and construction-engineering sectors functional and operational in companies throughout the APEC region as instructed by Ministers and Leaders. More than 100 newly trained ethics compliance trainers will implement ethics compliance training throughout the APEC and ASEAN trade region in the upcoming year. These work will raise ethics compliance awareness and place ethics compliance at the core of business applications which is an imperative for conducting business in today’s global marketplace.

18. We appreciate the initiative of The United States to organize “The Workshop on Stakeholder Awareness for the Healthcare sector”. This workshop will increase public and private sector ethics awareness and further facilitate the implementation of business codes of conduct to ease trade barriers in the heathcare sector. We applaud the Bali Statement that fosters ethics compliance among relevant healthcare stakeholders and the creation of an APEC Business Ethics Forum to further facilitate regional cooperation and capacity building in our fight against corruption.

19. We appreciate the capacity building train-the-trainer workshop hosted by Malaysia and the United States to make codes of conduct in the medical device, biopharmaceutical, and construction-engineering sectors functional and operational in companies throughout the APEC region as instructed by Ministers and Leaders. More than 100 newly trained ethics compliance trainers will implement ethics compliance training throughout the APEC and ASEAN trade region in the upcoming year. This works will not only raise ethics compliance awareness, it will placed ethics compliance at the core of business applications which is an imperative for conducting business in today’s global marketplace.

20. We appreciate the initiative of The United States to organize “The Workshop on Stakeholder Awareness for the Healthcare sector”. This workshop will increase public and private sector ethics awareness and further facilitate the implementation of business codes of conduct to ease trade barriers in the heathcare sector.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Small-and-Medium-Enterprise/2013_sme.aspx

2012 APEC Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Declaration
St. Petersburg, Russia, 3 August 2012

14. We agree that corruption imposes a significant market access barrier and high costs for SMEs.  To address this challenge, we endorsed principles for voluntary codes of business ethics for the medical device, biopharmaceutical, and construction/engineering sectors. We recognize the importance of working to raise awareness of these principles. We welcome progress in implementing these principles, through the development of codes of ethics by industry associations and companies and capacity building efforts. We call on other relevant stakeholders, such as professional organizations, to implement voluntary codes consistent with these principles. We urge industry regulators, anti-corruption enforcement authorities, and the relevant entities to encourage, advance, and facilitate acceptance of voluntary industry codes and ethical collaborations consistent with these codes.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Small-and-Medium-Enterprise/2012_sme.aspx

2011 APEC Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Declaration
Big Sky, Montana, United States, 21 May 2011

8. Economic growth and job creation in APEC’s member markets can be bolstered by embracing business ethics to enhance the competitiveness of SMEs, promoting the use of new technologies by SMEs to reduce the cost of doing business, and identifying policies that support green SMEs to thrive in a green growth economy. 

Discussion on Embracing Business Ethics to Enhance SMEs’ Competitiveness 

9. We agreed that corruption is a significant market access barrier for SMEs that disproportionately impacts their ability to prosper and grow. Ministers agreed that all APEC economies must address corruption, as it undermines innovation, job growth, economic stability and trade among APEC members. Ministers strongly support the APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Initiative to eliminate the high cost of corruption in sectors of export interest to SMEs. 

10. The Ministers endorsed the adoption and implementation of the Kuala Lumpur Principles Medical Device Sector Codes of Ethics (the “KL Principles”), which were developed by an Expert Working Group in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Ministers called on the medical device sector industry associations and their member companies to adopt and implement codes of business ethics consistent with the KL Principles and encouraged capacity building initiatives so that these measures are fully implemented. 

11. Finally, Ministers fully support and look forward to the development of additional sets of voluntary ethical principles or codes of ethics in sectors where SMEs are important stakeholders, beginning with the construction and bio-pharmaceutical sectors. 

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Small-and-Medium-Enterprise/2011_sme.aspx

2010 APEC Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Declaration
Gifu, Japan, 2-3 October 2010

18. In order to strengthen SMEs' access to global markets, we recognised that the following actions are important and we agreed to call the first three actions the "Gifu Initiative."

d) Facilitating open and transparent business environments free from the high costs of corruption by the development of APEC codes of business ethics in sectors of export interest to APEC economies, beginning with the medical device sector.

26. We thanked the United States in advance for hosting the next APEC SME Ministerial and related meetings in May 2011 in Big Sky, Montana. The United States previewed the topics for workshops envisioned for this set of meetings, among other topics, anti-corruption and building clean business environments for APEC SMEs, including the development of APEC codes of business ethics for interested sectors; women's economic empowerment through entrepreneurial skills development; and trade finance for innovative green technology exports.

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Small-and-Medium-Enterprise/2010_sme.aspx

APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade

2016 APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade Statement
Arequipa, Peru, 17-18 May 2016

Strengthening Business Ethics for SMEs

We acknowledge progress by the Business Ethics for APEC SMEs Initiative in doubling the number of industry association codes of ethics, expanding high-standard ethical business practices to more than 19,000 enterprises. We reaffirm the importance of ethical practices for long-term economic growth and facilitating engagement in GVCs for SMEs. We encourage the implementation of APEC principles for codes of ethics in target sectors as well as the launch of multi-stakeholder ethical collaborations to strengthen the business environment for SMEs.

Link: http://www.apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Trade/2016_trade.aspx

2015 APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade Statement
Boracay, Philippines, 23-24 May 2015

Strengthening Business Ethics for SMEs

We reaffirm the importance of ethical business practices to long-term economic growth and facilitating engagement in GVCs for SMEs. We encourage the continued implementation of APEC principles for codes of ethics in sectors of importance to SMEs.

Link: http://www.apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Trade/2015_trade.aspx

2014 APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade Statement
Qingdao, China, 17-18 May 2014

22. We will continue to undertake actions to address the barriers that Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) face in trading in the region to further enhance their contributions to economic growth and job creation in our economies. We reaffirm the importance of building up an enabling environment to accelerate startups and boost development of SMEs, through addressing trade, investment and regulatory barriers for SMEs and offering improved and efficient services to them. We support efforts to reduce operating costs of SMEs, especially costs related to internationalization, and to enhance SMEs’ global competitiveness, business ethics and their participation in Global Value Chains. We encourage officials to take concrete actions to foster creativity and productivity among SMEs, and to encourage the use of Business Continuity Plans by SMEs to boost their disaster resilience. We reaffirm the importance of ethical business practices to long-term economic growth and the facilitation of cross-border trade, particularly for SMEs. We encourage officials to explore the possibility of a wider range of adoption of codes of ethics in accordance with APEC principles.

Link: http://www.apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Trade/2014_trade.aspx

2013 APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade Statement
Surabaya, Indonesia, 20-21 April 2013

Achieving Sustainable Growth with Equity

22. We note the efforts made by APEC this year in the area of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs, including youth and women entrepreneurs). SMEs, including entrepreneurs and women, are crucial driving force for employment and development of the economy. To ensure that, SMEs, many of which are women-owned can participate in and benefit from international trade, we reaffirm the importance of addressing trade investment and regulatory barriers for SMEs, and support efforts to enhance SMEs' global competitiveness, business ethics, and their participation in Global Value Chains. We instruct officials to continue dedicating efforts and work in these areas. 

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Trade/2013_trade.aspx

2012 APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade Statement
Kazan, Russia, 4-5 June 2012

23. We endorse the importance of initiatives in anti-corruption activities within APEC economies to strengthen trade and investment in the APEC region, particularly by promoting public-private partnerships in this sphere. Corruption poses a significant market access barrier and high cost for companies, especially SMEs, limiting growth and financial integrity. We reaffirm our commitments to fight corruption and illicit trade, and to ensure transparency through boosting cooperation among APEC economies and other international stakeholders. We welcome continued APEC capacity building efforts to implement voluntary codes of business ethics and facilitate industry regulators and anti-corruption enforcement authorities to advance ethical collaborations in line with the APEC principles. 

Link: http://apec.org/Meeting-Papers/Sectoral-Ministerial-Meetings/Trade/2012_trade.aspx