VP Harris holds critical conversations with world leaders at APEC Summit

VP Harris holds critical conversations with world leaders at APEC Summit

San Francisco, Nov 18 (PTI) Vice President Kamala Harris held critical conversations with world leaders at the APEC Summit here primarily focusing on women’s economic empowerment, inclusive growth, and strengthening bilateral ties. After President Joe Biden, she has emerged as the most influential foreign policy voice of the United States and her conversations are focused on humane voices, the White House said.

Addressing the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Business Advisory Council meeting, Harris, 59, announced more than USD 900 million in public and private sector investment towards an innovative initiative to bolster women’s economic empowerment around the world, it said.

This week’s events followed her 14th foreign trip as she has visited 20 countries to strengthen America’s alliances and partnerships.

Speaking at the Women’s Economic Participation in the Industries of the Future event, Harris launched the Women in the Sustainable Economy Initiative.

As part of this launch, she announced more than USD 900 million in commitments by governments, private sector companies, foundations, and civil society to bolster women’s economic participation.

This innovative programme will bolster women’s economic empowerment globally by expanding access to employment, training, leadership roles, and financial resources in the industries critical to our future and the future of our planet, it said.

The announcements in Accra, Ghana of USD 1 billion in public and private sector commitments will help close the digital gender divide. In the last eight months, her leadership has generated more than USD 2.4 billion to empower women economically around the world, the White House said.

During the APEC Leadership Summit, Harris held timely and productive conversations with a hoist of world leaders. This includes a meeting with President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. of the Philippines – their fifth meeting in the past year.

The two leaders committed to continuing to work together to promote a free and open Indo-Pacific and continued their work together to defend international rules and norms in the South China Sea. They also discussed strengthening economic ties, it said.

Harris announced the conclusion of a historic “123” civil nuclear cooperation agreement, which will deepen the US-Philippines partnership to build a global clean energy economy and strengthen their shared commitment to improving energy security and advancing the global non-proliferation regime.

Harris announced the launch of the “123” agreement negotiations while in Manila in November 2022. This agreement will provide the legal basis for US exports of nuclear equipment and material to the Philippines, which will support American workers and businesses, the White House said.

The Vice President also met with Prime Minister James Marape of Papua New Guinea, as part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to the Pacific Islands region. They discussed advancing security and economic cooperation between the two nations. She has met with more than 150 world leaders since being sworn in.

In her address to the APEC Business Advisory Council Meeting alongside APEC leaders and CEOs, Harris underscored that the Indo-Pacific is critical to the security and prosperity of the American people while highlighting the important partnership with APEC economies that represent more than 60 per cent of the global GDP.

Welcoming APEC leaders to the United States at a reception alongside President Biden, Harris said: “Under our president, Joe Biden, the United States will continue to lead on innovation, economic cooperation, and a shared vision for the future. Together, through APEC, we can grow our economies, unlock industries of the future, and ensure that all people prosper.” Speaking about the Bay Area and how she learned of the power of innovation to lift communities from a young age, Harris said as Vice President she has seen how new ideas and new technologies that started in the Bay Area have gone on to move all of humanity forward, the White House said.

She noted that 'APEC is an opportunity to continue our work together to “improve the human condition,” it said. PTI LKJ RHL NSA NSA NSA

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