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VLADIVOSTOK, September 5 (Itar-Tass) ——Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Economic Development Minister Andrei Belousov opened a meeting of APEC foreign and trade ministers in Vladivostok on Wednesday.
The four rounds of the two-day meeting will focus on food security, preparedness for emergency situations and natural calamities, liberalization of trade and investments, innovative technologies and promotion to female businesses. A joint statement will be published on the meeting results.
“The joint meeting of foreign and trade ministers climaxes preparations for the 20th APEC summit. We will sum up results of the Russian chairmanship year and discuss tasks for the future. We are also due to complete the drafting of the summit declaration,” Lavrov said.
“The APEC spent the year 2012 under the motto: integration for development, innovations for prosperity,” he said. “Cooperation priorities proposed by the Russian chair have been coordinated: these include regional economic integration, upgrading of transport and logistics and innovative development. Russia put forward initiatives and suggested cooperation projects for each of these priorities and other topical items on the APEC agenda. Nearly 50 proposals of ours have been evaluated by the forum’s working bodies, have gained support of ministerial meetings and have been approved for execution,” he said.
“The enthusiastic reaction of APEC member states displays their readiness to develop these ideas into concepts and to take practical steps,” Lavrov said.
The APEC was formed in 1989. It has 21 members. Russia joined the forum in 1998. APEC member states account for 49% of the global population, 55% of the global GDP, 47% of world trade and 44.5% of direct investments. Russia chairs the APEC for the first time this year.