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ABAC PH pushes for collaborative work towards sustainable, inclusive and resilient economies

Auckland, New Zealand – ABAC Philippines attends this year’s first meeting of the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) being held at Auckland, New Zealand. Under the United States chairmanship with the theme, “Equity. Sustainability. Opportunity.” ABAC begins its work on further deepening integration to address the challenges of climate change and economic inclusion.

ABAC I started with the annual Dialogue with APEC Senior Officials to discuss areas where government intervention is most needed and how the business community can help provide concrete and bold outcomes. Acting Senior Official for the Philippines and Department of Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Gina Jamoralin shared how robust public-private collaboration results in policies, which effectively addresses social and economic challenges, especially the “low hanging fruits.”  

“Sustainability, resiliency, and green energy and decarbonization are important as they also address Philippine priorities towards food security, strengthening regional supply chains in the region, address food inflation and climate change actions,” added Asec Jamoralin, who was appointed Philippine Ambassador to Indonesia. 

Representing the Philippines in ABAC I are ABAC member Bill Luz of Ayala Corporation and ABAC PH Lead Staffer Patrick Chua, together with Ginggay Hontiveros of the Aboitiz Group, representing its President and CEO Sabin Aboitiz. Mr. Aboitiz sits as vice chair of ABAC’s Sustainable Growth Working Group, where ABAC Philippines presented on nuclear energy/SMR (small modular reactor) as viable zero carbon energy source and on democratizing climate risk scenarios information. 

“We recognize that the need is great, requiring open-mindedness and that we can and should continue exploring every available technology that will ensure supply of reliable, cost competitive and sustainable energy over different planning horizons. A continuous and thriving pipeline of power generation investments are needed to fuel the growth of our economies,” said Hontiveros in her presentation.

Meanwhile, ABAC member Joanne de Asis of Globe Capital Partners is the Project Lead in ABAC’s Finance Task Force, championing cross-border data sharing. ABAC Philippines will look at legal and regulatory innovations to facilitate the free and trusted flow of data across financial services firms.. 

This year, ABAC Philippines under ABAC PH chair Tomas Alcantara of Alsons Consolidated Resources, will focus on advancing sustainable, inclusive and resilient growth. Key focus areas are: (1) Food security, (2) Energy security, (3) Climate change, and (4) Digital Innovation, particularly on education and skills development for the new future of work.

In 2022, under Thailand’s chairmanship, ABAC Philippines has successfully led ABAC’s work on strengthening services trade and investment, with specific focus on skills development and services competitiveness. Also last year, ABAC Philippines proposed the adoption of an epidemic risk transfer solutions platform, which was adopted by the APEC Finance Ministers.