APEC Trade Ministers Agree to Expedite Vaccine Flow


Tokyo, June 6 (Jiji Press)--Trade ministers from the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum said Saturday they have agreed to expedite the flow of COVID-19 vaccines.

"APEC economies will expedite the flow and transit of all COVID-19 vaccines and related goods through their air, sea and land ports," the ministers said in a joint statement released after a virtual meeting.

The ministers also agreed to accelerate the digitalization of border processes. Japanese trade minister Hiroshi Kajiyama sought to address cumbersome exchanges of documents, a challenge highlighted by the pandemic.

On climate change, the ministers said APEC economies should reduce carbon emissions in accordance with their own circumstances, in apparent consideration for some members, mainly in Asia, that need to rely on cheap fossil fuels for the time being.

"We recognize member economies' energy transitions to a low emissions future will reflect the different circumstances in each economy," the ministers said.

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Jiji Press