Maxim Oreshkin: Development of APEC E-services to Be a Factor of Remote Territories Integration


The Joint Meeting of APEC foreign and trade ministers has opened in Da Nang (Vietnam). 

Maxim Oreshkin, Russian Minister of Economic Development, took part in the session focused on discussing promotion of sustainable, innovative and inclusive growth, higher food security, and climate-change sustainable agriculture support.

The heads of the APEC countries’ delegations confirmed the pivotal role of structural reforms to support economic growth through increased labor productivity and developed human resources.

 "Over the past five years, by carrying out structural reforms, Russia has demonstrated a positive dynamics in the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business rankings," said Maxim Oreshkin adding that Russia has jumped to the 35th spot this year, while holding the 124th position in 2012. 

According to him, Russia has launched the Labor Productivity Improvement Program, which focuses on progressive regulatory practices, creating quality jobs, staff retraining, supporting small and medium businesses, and providing employment for women with young children, as well as for disabled people.

Maxim Oreshkin highlighted Vietnam's efforts to give a new impetus to the APEC agenda to ensure inclusive growth in the digital economy.  "It is extremely important that all our people have the opportunity to enjoy a decent life and benefit from regional economic integration, regardless of age, gender, physical abilities, social origin or place of residence," he said. 

He said that Russia considered inclusive growth to be a priority issue. This year, our country invited the APEC partners to discuss the issue of bridging the gap in economic development and integration of remote territories.   "This topic is relevant for all APEC economies, which include remote and hard-to-reach territories, such as islands, mountain, forest and desert regions, which are located at a considerable distance from political, financial and economic centers," he added. 

The head of the Russian delegation said that in order to develop a coordinated and systemic approach to the issue, the Overcoming the Gap in Economic Development and Remote Territories Integration for APEC Sustainable Growth dialogue was held in August. Based on its outcomes, it was decided to prepare in 2018 fundamental principles for development and economic integration of remote regions of the Asia Pacific, which are to identify these regions’ key challenges, as well as mechanisms for their overcoming, possible directions for information exchange and cooperation between APEC economies.  The instrument will continue to be worked out with support from Papua New Guinea, the next APEC Chairman.

 "Advance in electronic services is one of the ways to integrate remote territories," Maxim Oreshkin emphasized.   Russia pays special attention to the issue.  Availability of e-services across Russia has already yielded some positive results, in particular, tax payment, customs procedures, and business registration have been significantly simplified.  "We have accumulated a considerable experience in providing electronic services and are ready to share it with our APEC partners," the head of the Russian delegation said.  Russia has initiated a dialogue on public services provided in electronic form to be held in 2018.  "All countries are welcome to take an active part in the dialogue," he added.

The Ministers supported the APEC Framework Action Plan for Human Resources Development in the Digital Age and the Action Plan of the APEC Education Strategy.