The G20 leaders gathered again at the APEC Summit meeting on 18-19 November 2022 in Bangkok, Thailand, after having just attended the G20 meeting in Bali, Indonesia. Even though the demonstrators were marred by chaos, the 2022 APEC Summit succeeded in producing a Leader’s Declaration. APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) is a regional economic forum to facilitate economic growth, collaboration, trade, and investment in the Asia-Pacific Region. Several G20 leaders are members of APEC, such as the US, China, Russia, Japan, South Korea, Canada, Australia, and Indonesia.
APEC represents 38 percent of the world’s population or 2.9 billion people, 47 percent of global trade, or USD 24 trillion, and 61 percent of the world’s total real GDP, or USD 53 trillion. But apart from economic issues, APEC can also be a platform that discusses issues behind the border and across the border related to trade and investment, such as security-defense issues. Based on these interests, the presence of the G20 leaders at APEC is very important in building economic and security cooperation between countries in the Asia Pacific region.
Before moving on to APEC, the 2022 G20 Summit produced the G20 Leaders’ Declaration which includes strengthening cooperation and commitments in the financial, economic, health, and SDGs, to security-defense especially those that can disrupt global economic movements. At the 2022 APEC Summit, sustainable agreements with the G20 declaration also succeeded in becoming part of the points in the 2022 Leaders’ Declaration at APEC.
The condemnation of the Russia-Ukraine war is one of the points contained in the 2022 APEC Leaders’ Declaration. The war must be stopped immediately because it will impact the food supply chain and the global economy. The point of that declaration is also important in the 2022 G20 leaders’ declaration. The urgency of bringing security discussions to economic forums is very important so those big power countries are more aware of the importance of building regional peace and focus more on economic development to achieve national interests and common prosperity. The war has pushed food and energy prices sharply higher, disrupting supply chains and hindering the world’s recovery from the pandemic.
Besides the Russia-Ukraine conflict, this is also a slap for global stakeholders that strengthening mutually beneficial economic cooperation is better than continuing to fuss over the rivalry between the West and the East, as President Xi Jinping said at the 2022 APEC Summit, “the Asia-Pacific region is ‘no one’s backyard’ and should not become an arena for big power contest”. Xi also warned against a “new Cold War” and attempts to dismantle supply chains built over decades, and called for strengthened cooperation and progress in achieving APEC’s vision of an open Asia-Pacific economy. Trade, investment, green economy, economic recovery and post-Covid-19 mitigation, and the regional connectivity visions are mutually continuous points in those two declarations. Collaboration between the countries is needed in dealing with the global crisis and the current recession threat. The big countries’ movements will determine the direction of the global dynamics which will affect third-world countries.