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11 November 2009

Singapore calls for Apec FTA

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The 21-nation Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) group has overcome many hurdles in its 20 years of existence, but it should now set its sights on forging a free trade area comprising almost half the world's trade, Singapore’s Foreign Minister George Yeo was quoted by the city-state’s broadcaster Channel News Asia as saying Tuesday.

The minister was speaking at a symposium in Singapore to mark the Asia-Pacific Regional Forum's 20th anniversary. The timeframe he had in mind was around two years.

“Creating consensus is often excruciating difficult. But 21 economies, meeting regularly, can set the pace and the direction for the whole world,” Yeo said.

“And we can do it whether it is for financial reform or climate change or the global trading agenda. It would help us 21 economies to create a much better world,” he added.


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