The 21st informal economic leaders' meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) kicked off here on Monday, with sustainable growth and regional cooperation high on the agenda.
Chinese President Xi Jinping, among other leaders from the region, attended the meeting. It was Xi's first participation in the APEC meeting since he assumed presidency in March.
This year's APEC gathering, themed "Resilient Asia-Pacific, Engine of Global Growth," highlights such topics as achieving sustainable growth with equity, promoting inter-connectivity in the region, and attaining the Bogor Goals, a timeline for achieving free and open trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific.
The two-day meeting comes against the backdrop of unevenness of global economic growth, potential uprise of trade and investment protectionism, the stalled Doha Round of global trade negotiations and strong efforts to boost economic integration in the Asia-Pacific region.
According to Chinese diplomats, Xi was expected to expound on China's positions on such issues as current global economic landscape, APEC's role in boosting multi-lateral trade system, inter-connectivity in the Asia-Pacific region and sustainable growth with equity.
Earlier on Monday, Xi attended a dialogue meeting with representatives of the APEC Business Advisory Council and exchanged views with them on the issues of common concern, including the economic situation in the Asia-Pacific.
APEC leaders will issue a joint declaration by the end of their meeting.
APEC, a premier economic forum in the Asia-Pacific region established in 1989, has been committed to dismantling barriers and bottlenecks that interfere with business while nurturing closer economic ties.
The organization has grown to encompass 21 members across the Asia-Pacific region, accounting for approximately 55 percent of global output and 44 percent of world trade, according to data provided on its official website.
As the highest-level meeting of the APEC, the informal economic leaders' meeting has been held annually since its first convention in Seattle, the United States in November 1993.