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Author Topic: Singapore to Pilot Trade Recovery Exercise in 2009  (Read 167 times)


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Singapore to Pilot Trade Recovery Exercise in 2009
« on: November 27, 2020, 06:14:36 pm »
Singapore has taken the lead in a pilot exercise, enlisting several APEC member economies to recreate a scenario in which trade supply chains have been disrupted.

The formal announcement came at the close of a two-day workshop (Workshop on APEC Trade Recovery Programme, 23 - 24 July 2008), bringing together industry experts and government officials from across the Asia-Pacific. "So far, trade recovery is something we have seen on paper. But we want to take it further," says BG (NS) Choi Shing Kwok, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transport.

In 2007, trade in goods accounted for 78 percent of all trade. Import and export activity are therefore fundamental to economic stability. However, systems are not impenetrable and the repercussions to a break in supply chains would be detrimental.

As an example, more than 90 percent of the world's cargo moves by sea containers. However, notes Dr. Sun Jia Kang, Managing Director at COSCO Container Lines, "Terrorists can use international shipping as a means to transport weapons and to conduct terrorist activities. They also make international shipping a target of attacks by hijacking ships, bombing ships, kidnapping or killing crew members. All these crimes can cause serious consequences to the security of the global supply chain. According to statistics, there were a total of 263 incidents of pirates attacking ships in 2007 - a 10% climb over that of 2006."

Responding to the call of APEC Leaders in Sydney last year, the Singapore-led exercise will explore and demonstrate how a formal Trade Recovery Plan really works.

Explains BG Choi, "The plan is for government agencies, the private sector, manufacturers, transporters, ports and carriers to provide inputs. Through the exercise, we will gain practical insight to the aftermath of a disruption. For example, this could include activities we might undertake, how they might be implemented and how we would exchange relevant information."

The exercise will be carried out in 2009 and will test simulated Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRAs), based on principles of trust, transparency and communication. Results will be reported to APEC Leaders'. The exercise will further develop the implementation of the APEC Trade Recovery Plan and the MRAs could be considered for permanent adoption.

Offers Michael Schmitz, Director of Compliance and Facilitation at the World Customs Organization: "[We have] been closely following the excellent work of APEC. We are particularly interested in APEC's Trade Recovery Program and we look forward to aligning our new SAFE Framework Standard on Trade Recovery with it."

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