Ministers Joly and Ng highlight international cooperation as key to sustainable and inclusive recovery from pandemic at APEC Ministerial Meeting

News release

November 9, 2021 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

International collaboration, in particular Canada’s partnerships within the Asia-Pacific region, is essential to achieving a strong, sustainable and inclusive global economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Today, the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development, concluded their participation in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministerial Meeting, which focused on how international trade can accelerate global economic recovery from the pandemic. The 2-day virtual meeting was hosted by New Zealand and held on November 8 and 9.

Both Minister Joly and Minister Ng engaged productively to endorse the 32nd APEC Ministerial Meeting Joint Ministerial Statement 2021, in which ministers from all APEC economies signalled their intent to pursue long-term, sustainable and inclusive growth in the Asia-Pacific region. The statement emphasizes the need to strengthen international cooperation on COVID-19, including on research and development. APEC ministers also noted the importance of science, technology and innovation in supporting the region’s recovery from the pandemic. The ministers highlighted their collective desire to exercise restraint in the use of unnecessary export restrictions and non-tariff barriers, ensuring that any such measures are consistent with the rules of the World Trade Organization.

Minister Joly underscored the need for APEC members to work collectively to work collectively with APEC members to achieve a more prosperous, resilient and inclusive recovery in a manner consistent with the rules-based international order and climate-action objectives. Minister Joly emphasized Canada’s foreign policy approach centred on gender equality in decision making, which contributes to long-term economic recovery and future growth. She also reiterated Canada’s commitment to increasing collaboration in the region to overcome economic, social and development challenges posed by the pandemic.

Minister Ng highlighted the importance of strengthening international trade and investment for the benefit of everyone, including traditionally underrepresented groups, such as women, Indigenous peoples and representatives of small and medium-sized enterprises. In particular, Minister Ng reiterated Canada’s commitment to working with APEC economies on inclusive trade by understanding exporters’ experiences and the barriers they face.


“Canada is firmly committed to working with other APEC economies to strengthen international trade and investments for the benefit of everyone, including women, Indigenous peoples and other underrepresented groups. This is how we can achieve a more resilient and inclusive economic recovery that will contribute to the prosperity of the region.”

- Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs

“There has never been a more important time for multilateral cooperation than now, as we look to recover and rebuild from COVID-19 pandemic. As a collaborative forum, APEC has brought significant improvements to the Asia-Pacific region over the past 30 years. Canada remains committed to navigating the uncertainties ahead in the global trade environment through this important economic partnership.”

- Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development

Quick facts

  • The APEC Ministerial Meeting is an annual gathering of ministers from APEC economies that takes place during APEC Economic Leaders’ Week.

  • Canada is a founding member of APEC. Established in 1989, APEC is a multilateral forum of 21 member economies in the Asia-Pacific region that promotes free trade, investment, economic growth and cooperation throughout the region.

  • In addition to the meeting, the week is comprised of a number of events, culminating in the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting on November 12.

  • APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040 is APEC’s vision for an open, dynamic, resilient and peaceful Asia-Pacific community; it focuses on 3 economic drivers: trade and investment; innovation and digitalization; and strong, balanced, secure, sustainable and inclusive growth.

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Alice Hansen
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
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