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Trade group established in 1989 in response to the growing interdependence of Asia-Pacific economies and the advent of regional economic blocs (such as the European Union and the North American Free Trade Area) in other parts of the world. APEC works to raise living standards and education levels through sustainable economic growth and to foster a sense of community and an appreciation of shared interests among Asia-Pacific countries. At the end of the 1990s APEC's membership included its 12 founding membersAustralia, Brunei, Canada, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and the United Statesas well as Chile, China (including Hong Kong), Mexico, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Russia, and Vietnam; Taiwan also participates as Chinese Taipei. The Pacific Economic Cooperation Council, the South Pacific Forum, and the secretariat of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations maintain observer status. The APEC group represents about 40% of the world's population, 40% of global trade, and 50% of the world's gross national product. See alsoNAFTA; trade agreement; World Trade Organization.
Variants of APEC
APEC in full Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on APEC, visit Britannica.com.
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