Trump to take part in virtual APEC summit Friday

Andrew Cummings
November 20, 2020

Suga made the comment in a pre-recorded video message delivered at the APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) CEO Dialogues, ahead of a leaders' virtual summit later Friday.

"POTUS is doing APEC", said a USA official, who did not want to be identified, using the acronym for the President of the United States.

The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) links 11 countries including Canada, Australia and Japan. At the 2018 meeting in Papua New Guinea, the US was represented by Vice President Mike Pence.

It will be only the second time that Trump, who is fighting his election loss to Democrat Joe Biden, has participated in APEC, the other occasion being in 2017. Trump is now engaged in a quixotic attempt to overturn the result of the election, prompting reasonable doubts as to whether he would be willing or able to take part.

The Trump administration has been criticised for a lower level of engagement in Asia.

Oh Ei Sun, an analyst from the Singapore Institute of International Affairs, said Trump would be aiming to "present himself as "presidential" on the global stage". Just $5 a month.

"We will continue to advance the trade and investment liberalisation and facilitation, to conduct negotiations with more countries on high standard free trade agreements and actively engage in bilateral, multilateral and regional mechanism for trade and investment cooperation, so as to build a higher standard and open economy". The US is not part of the RCEP.

Mr Trump pulled the United States out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact, the predecessor to CPTPP.

For his own part, a week after the signing of RCEP, Xi attempted to underline China's commitment to openness.

"Our new development pattern is not a closed domestic single circulation, but an open and mutually promoting domestic and global dual circulation", Xi said.

"In today's world where economic globalization has become an irreversible trend, no country can develop itself by keeping its doors closed", Xi said Thursday.

"Trade has been the engine of growth and prosperity in APEC since it was founded 30 years ago", New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. Xi and Vice President Mike Pence traded sharp barbs in back-to-back speeches at APEC meetings two years ago, a confrontation that prevented the forum from issuing a joint statement for the first time.

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