Press Release – University Of The South Pacific
The University of the South Pacific’s Faculty of Business and Economics together with the Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ArtNeT) launched a new book on trade and investment at the Laucala Campus on 19 October, 2011. Titled …
21st October, 2011
The University of the South Pacific’s Faculty of Business and Economics together with the Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ArtNeT) launched a new book on trade and investment at the Laucala Campus on 19 October, 2011.
Titled “Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report 2011” under the theme “Post-crisis Trade and Investment Opportunities”, it is an annual report of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP).
The book is also the only publication in the region which provides data for a large number of trade performance indicators for most of the 58 regional members of UNESCAP.
The data includes the export and import growth rates, shares in intraregional trade, services trade, indicators of trade facilitation, tariff levels and the number of Regional Trade Agreements and their trade coverage.
The report also features analysis of key issues for the region, such as preferential trade agreements, linkage between trade, investment and climate change mitigation policies, and the centrality of China in the Asian century.
The Dean of the Faculty of Business and Economics, Professor Biman Chand Prasad presented the major findings of the 2011 report at the launch. Professor Prasad highlighted that the report identifies the challenges for investment and trade in the Asia-Pacific region and provides recommendations for policy makers.
“The report also identifies the key issues surrounding trade and investment in the region in the post-crisis period and projections for 2012,” Professor Prasad said.
He stressed that the report is very valuable for the Pacific.
“The report is important for the region as it lays down the key challenges and recommends policy interventions for harnessing new opportunities and is very useful for researchers and policy makers,” he added.
The report was prepared by UNESCAP trade division which also hosts the Asia-Pacific Research Network on Trade (ARTNeT).
ARTNeT is a regional network of leading trade research institutions across the Asia-Pacific region and aims to increase the amount of quality and relevant trade research by harnessing the research capacity already available in various institutions in the region.
“USP is a founding member of the network and staffs from the School of Economics and FBE are involved in research activities supported by ARTNeT,” he said.
In his introductory remarks, the Regional Advisor of ESCAP Subregional Office of the Pacific, Mr David Smith commented that international trade and cross-border investments were very big development issues in the Pacific.
“Many Pacific island economies are highly dependent on trade in both goods and services, especially tourism, and this means achieving higher rates of economic growth will require a lot of effort,” he explained.
According to Mr Smith, trade barriers- tariffs, quarantine requirements and red tape – are major issues that require government attention and action.
He said that trade and investment issues are only one of the core areas in which ESCAP carries out analytical work to address common development problems that face the Asia Pacific region.
“The Asia-Pacific trade and Investment report is a regular publication of ESCAP which aims to stimulate thinking and policy making that will lead to improved trade in the region,” Mr Smith said.
“A Pacific focus is brought to the work of ESCAP through the ESCAP Pacific office based in Suva,” Mr Smith added.
The launch was well attended by USP staff and students, government representatives, other invited guests, and the media.