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Outcomes from APEC 2023

Published 28 November 2023

Leaders of Asia-Pacific economies met in San Francisco in mid-November for the APEC Summit and key bilateral and multilateral meetings. What were the trade outcomes of the meetings? Have China’s industrial policy initiatives produced positive results? Explore our reading list for the latest developments in global trade.

Key takeaways from APEC 2023 and related meetings

The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies published a Leaders’ Declaration and Ministerial Meeting statement committing to a free, open, and non-discriminatory trade and investment environment, along with the San Francisco Principles, a statement on integrating inclusivity and sustainability into trade and investment policy. The US hoped to conclude all four pillars of its Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) initiative during the US APEC host year. IPEF members issued a press statement on the status of the concluded negotiations for three pillars, but failed to finish negotiations on the trade pillar, reports Bloomberg. APEC outcomes were overshadowed by the bilateral meeting between US President Biden and Chinese leader Xi; Carnegie Endowment for International Peace assesses the meeting.

Mentioned publications

  1. 2023 Leaders' Declaration and 2023 APEC Ministerial MeetingAsia Pacific Economic Cooperation, November 2023
    APEC Leaders commit to a free, open, fair, non-discriminatory, transparent, inclusive, and predictable trade and investment environment.

  2. San Francisco Principles on Integrating Inclusivity and Sustainability into Trade and Investment PolicyAsia Pacific Economic Cooperation, November 2023
    The US advances its priorities on inclusion and sustainability in the work of APEC.

  3. Press Statement on Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity Meetings in San Francisco – November 16, 2023
    The 14 IPEF partner countries announce substantial conclusion of negotiations for three of four IPEF pillars.

  4. US, Asian Nations Not Ready to Finalize Economic Accord at APEC – Eric Martin and Jenny Leonard, Bloomberg, November 14, 2023
    Negotiations on the trade pillar of IPEF failed to conclude, counter to expectations.

  5. Carnegie China Scholars on the Biden-Xi Meeting – Paul Haenle, Xue Gong, Ngeow Chow Bing, and Tong Zhao, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, November 21, 2023
    Experts comment on the meaning of the Biden-Xi meeting on the sidelines of APEC.

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Resilient supply chains

A comprehensive report from the World Trade Organization, Asian Development Bank, and others assesses global value chains in turbulent times, while a paper by Sam Mulopulos of the Ian Axford Fellowships in Public Policy presents the theory, practice, and action of supply chain resilience policy. IPEF members recently concluded negotiations on a supply chain agreement, which represents a win for US industrial policy according to Ryan Mulholland of the Center for American Progress, but runs counter to trends per Abigail Dahlman and Mary E. Lovely of the Peterson Institute for International Economics.

Mentioned publications

  1. Global Value Chain Development Report 2023: Resilient and Sustainable GVCs in Turbulent TimesAsian Development Bank, Research Institute for Global Value Chains at the University of International Business and Economics, the Institute of Developing Economies – Japan External Trade Organization, and the World Trade Organization, November 2023
    A report on the resilience and sustainability of global value chains in response to recent shocks.

  2. Supply Chain Resilience Policy: Theory, Practice, and Action Sam Mulopulos, Ian Axford Fellowships in Public Policy, August 2023
    A paper exploring how to evaluate supply chain resilience and policies.

  3. The IPEF Supply Chain Agreement Is a  Win for U.S. Industrial Policy – Ryan Mulholland, Center for American Progress, November 20, 2023
    The IPEF supply chain agreement represents an alignment of US international economic policy and efforts to rebuild US manufacturing.

  4. US-led effort to diversify Indo-Pacific supply chains away from China runs counter to trends – Abigail Dahlman and Mary E. Lovely, Peterson Institute for International Economics, September 6, 2023
    IPEF member imports and exports have become increasingly reliant on China over the past decade.

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The costs and benefits of industrial policy

Chad Bown tells the story of industrial policy detectives and China’s shipbuilding industry, for the Trade Talks podcast, while Natixis analyzes China’s success in electric vehicle and EV battery exports. Is the new US industrial policy worth the cost? Laura Tyson and John Zysman provide an answer in Project Syndicate, while the Financial Times presents a report on the role of US industrial policy in rebuilding US manufacturing. US industrial policy is fueling a boom in the global car trade per the Wall Street Journal, but EV manufacturing in the US may face headwinds from weaker demand, reports Bloomberg.

Mentioned publications

  1. Industrial policy detectives: China’s subsidies for shipbuilding – Chad Bown, Trade Talks (Podcast), November 4, 2023
    China is estimated to have spent US$90 billion on subsidies to create a domestic shipbuilding industry.

  2. Asia Thematic Research – Electric VehiclesNatixis, November 23, 2023
    China’s EV exports have seen strong growth, with global market share for EVs and EV batteries surging.

  3. The New Industrial Policy and Its Critics – Laura Tyson and John Zysman, Project Syndicate, November 17, 2023
    New US industrial policy can be market correcting rather than market distorting.

  4. Special Report: US ManufacturingFinancial Times, October 18, 2023
    Is US industrial policy spurring a renaissance in US manufacturing?

  5. U.S. Subsidies Fuel Boom in Global Auto TradeThe Wall Street Journal, November 19, 2023
    Because of subsidies, EV exports are strong while generally exports are weakening.

  6. Ford to Scale Back Planned Battery Plant on Weaker EV DemandBloomberg, November 21, 2023
    Ford scales back EV battery production plans after weaker than expected EV demand.

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Identify an economy’s top exports

Can you name the top four exports of any economy? Connect Trade, a new game from the Observatory of Economic Complexity is for you.

Mentioned publications

  1. Connect TradeObservatory of Economic Complexity
    An extremely challenging game testing knowledge of top exports from every country.

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