Najib to be involved in key engagements prior to Apec meet

DA NANG, Vietnam: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak will be involved in key engagements ahead of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Leaders' Meeting here today, including attending the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Leaders' Meeting and three bilateral meetings.

Najib, who arrived on Thursday, and other leaders of 21-member Apec economies, are convening in the resort city here for the two-day Apec Leaders' Meeting, the main event of the Apec meet from Friday, to reshape globalisation and trade policy.

A tight schedule awaits the premier today where he will kick off his programme with the US-Apec Business Coalition Meeting at a leading hotel here.

He will then depart for Ariyana Danang Exhibition and Convention Centre to attend Apec CEO Summit where he will be one of the panellists in Apec's Post-2020 Vision session.

US President Donald Trump and China's President Xi Jinping would deliver keynote addresses at the event while Facebook's Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg, will participate in a dialogue.

Najib will also hold bilateral talks with New Zealand's Prime Minister, Jacinta Ardern, and Australia's Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, in between his APEC programmes today.

The TPP Leaders' Meeting is also scheduled today as the trade pact has reached a critical point after 11 TPP countries decided to proceed with the game-changing multilateral trade agreement sans the US.

Other programmes outlined for the Apec Leaders' Meeting today include a plenary session with Apec Business Advisory Council (Abac) Plenary Session, Abac Dialogue with Apec Leaders and Apec-Asean Informal Dialogue.

Vietnam's President, Tran Dai Quang, will host a gala dinner for the Apec leaders tonight.

Apec, established in 1989, is an economic, trade and investment forum among 21 Pacific Rim countries, representing half of the world's gross domestic product and trade.

The members are Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, US and Vietnam. — Bernama