New Zealand will chair APEC in 2021 and for the first time, we will chair it virtually.

In light of the uncertainty around COVID-19 and the fast-changing regional context, the decision to host APEC virtually, rather than in-person is a pragmatic solution which focuses on achieving meaningful outcomes.

APEC is a significant opportunity for New Zealand to work with our fellow economies to support the region's economic recovery from the impacts of COVID-19.

Nāku te rourou, nāu te rourou, ka ora ai te iwi

(With you contribution and my contribution, the people will thrive).


leaders waving at APEC 2018

Getting the most out of hosting APEC

Ministers from China, Singapore, and New Zealand talking
China's Assistant Minister of Commerce Li Chenggang; Singapore’s Trade Minister Chan Chun Sing; New Zealand’s Minister for Trade and Economic Growth David Parker; Hong Kong, China’s Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau Tang-Wah. Photo courtesy APEC Secretariat

To get the most out of hosting APEC, we are doing extensive stakeholder engagement to identify policy priorities, leveraging and supporting activities, and opportunities for Māori success, to deliver economic benefits beyond 2021.

We are investigating initiatives in areas such as:

  • supporting pro-growth policies that promote sustainability and inclusion
  • harnessing disruptive technologies
  • advancing the cause of trade and investment liberalisation, traditionally described in APEC as 'regional economic integration'
  • implementing APEC’s post-2020 vision.

New Zealand’s policy priorities will be finalised in late-2020.


A theme for New Zealand’s host year will be finalised following the General Election in 2020.


children playing in a rock pool

New Zealand is known for being a team player, for being willing to listen, and for the flexibility and creativity of our thinking. As we look ahead to the region's COVID-19 recovery, these qualities will be needed in spades.

The APEC New Zealand team is now working through the details of running APEC in 2021 using a virtual meeting approach.