China President Xi Jinping Praised HM Sultan Brunei

PRESS RELEASE

HIS MAJESTY THE SULTAN AND YANG DI-PERTUAN OF BRUNEI DARUSSALAM CONSENTED TO ATTEND THE SECOND RETREAT SESSION OF THE 22ND APEC ECONOMIC LEADERS’ MEETING (AELM) 2014

Beijing, Tuesday, 11 November 2014

His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mui’zzadin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, this afternoon consented to attend the Second Retreat Session of the 22nd APEC Economics Leaders’ Meeting (AELM) 2014, held at the Jixian Hall, International Convention Center (ICC), Yanqi Lake. The Retreat Session carried the topic: “Promoting Innovative Development, Economic Reform and Growth”.

At the Second Retreat Session, APEC Economic Leaders discussed issues related to the APEC Accord on Innovative Development, Economic Reform and Growth, which identifies Economic Reform, New Economy, Innovative Growth, Inclusive Support and Urbanisation as the five pillars for promoting experience sharing, policy dialogue, capacity building and practical cooperation. APEC economies are also currently working to establish and implement policies to reach the goal of universal access to broadband by 2015. In addition, China has proposed the “Healthy Asia-Pacific 2020” initiative, aimed at promoting cooperation among economies in the field of health and sets direction for the strategic plan 2016-2020.

At the session, His Majesty consented to deliver a Titah whereby His Majesty began by expressing his appreciation to His Excellency President Xi Jinping, the People and Government of the People’s Republic of China for the warm hospitality and excellent arrangements that had been made for the meeting.

His Majesty registered Brunei’s support for the idea of exploring the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific as this would complement existing efforts to enhance regional economic integration. His Majesty shared his belief that in order for the Asia-Pacific to continue to be the engine of global growth, APEC needs to step up efforts to attain further progress in many of its initiatives. In particular, innovation is an essential element in driving economic productivity and growth, especially for APEC’s small and medium businesses. Therefore, an enabling environment to support market-based innovation needs to be created. This includes improving the education system and investing more in research and development.

His Majesty was happy to learn that APEC had succeeded in tripling Internet access in the region, as had been targeted in Brunei Darussalam in the year 2000. In fact, by 2010, APEC had already reached the goal of universal Internet access. This investment by member economies in ICT infrastructure will indeed help to increase the capacity of APEC’s human resources and entrepreneurs to innovate, His Majesty noted. APEC’s continuing efforts to undertake structural reform is therefore necessary, especially to meet the demands of the New Economy. Reform in intellectual property rights, for instance, will help to protect the creative ideas of innovators and promote their ingenuity, His Majesty further stated.

His Majesty also hoped that APEC can continue to support each other by sharing best practices and experiences. In this regard, His Majesty welcomed the APEC Accord on Innovative Development, Economic Reform and Growth, which His Majesty believes goes hand in hand with advancing sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth in the Asia-Pacific region.

His Majesty then stated that the health of the people plays a big part in increasing the region’s productivity levels. As such, His Majesty commended APEC’s “Healthy Asia-Pacific 2020” initiative to promote healthy populations throughout the entire course of their lives. However, outbreaks of infectious diseases like SARs and most recently Ebola, have continued to threaten not only public health, but also affect economic sectors like agriculture, tourism and transportation.

His Majesty therefore urged increased cooperation in the prevention and control of these pandemic diseases, especially through capacity building and information sharing between APEC’s relevant agencies, and where possible, a collaboration with the private sector. His Majesty stated that APEC’s efforts in this area will certainly complement ASEAN’s Vision for Health Development Beyond 2015: “A Healthy, Caring and Sustainable ASEAN Community”.

Looking ahead, His Majesty reiterated the importance of economic and technical cooperation for the long-term development of APEC. As APEC celebrates its 25th Anniversary of the forum, APEC members should continue to work together in ensuring that ECOTECH remains a strong pillar in realizing the Bogor Goals and in bridging development gaps. In this regard, His Majesty joined Leaders in endorsing the APEC Strategic Plan on Capacity-Building to Promote Trade and Investment Agenda. His Majesty expressed his hope that with the strategic plan, capacity-building projects in APEC will be more demand-driven and tailored to assist developing economies.

Immediately after His Majesty’s Titah, His Excellency the President of the Republic of China, as Chairman of the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting (AELM) 2014, congratulated and expressed his appreciation to His Majesty for being the only leader who has continuously attended the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting since its inception 25 years ago, as well as His Majesty’s valuable contributions to APEC.

Accompanying His Majesty were Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Laila Setia Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abd Rahman bin Haji Ibrahim, Second Minister of Finance at the Prime Minister’s Office; and Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Dewa Dato Seri Setia Lim Jock Seng, Second Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Prime Minister's Office
Istana Nurul Iman
Bandar Seri Begawan
Brunei Darussalam

18 Muharram 1436
11 November 2014

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