What is APEC? Here’s what you need to know about APEC SF 2023

SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — The APEC Economic Leaders Week meeting is coming to San Francisco next week. The meeting is a regional economic forum put on by the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) that will see world and economic leaders descend on SF for several days.

APEC gets underway on Saturday, Nov. 11 and will continue through Friday, Nov. 17.

What is APEC?

APEC was established in 1989 and serves as an economic platform for the U.S. to advance economic trading policies in the Asia-Pacific region. The meeting is about promoting trade between APEC members, which are distinguished as “economies” rather than nations.

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The San Francisco meeting next week is the final APEC meeting of 2023. Other APEC meetings over the course of the year have focused on “regional economic issues, including sustainability, digitalization, women’s economic empowerment, trade facilitation, energy security, food security, and health,” according to APEC.

Who is coming to APEC?

The meeting will bring together 21 APEC Economic Leaders, ministers, the private sector and other stakeholders together to engage. U.S. President Joe Biden is scheduled to attend, as is Chinese President Xi Jimping, among other Asia-Pacific world leaders. The meeting will be the biggest international event to bring world leaders to San Francisco since the city served as the backdrop to the founding of the United Nations in 1945.

APEC events

The meeting will feature events throughout the week, including:

  • APEC University Leaders’ Forum

  • Green Innovation & Sustainable Development Forum

  • Global Women Asia Sustainability Fellows Gender and Women Reception

  • APEC Study Centers Consortium Conference

  • APEC Meets California and Silicon Valley

  • Connect with San Francisco Startups and Businesses During APEC

  • The Future Starts in California

  • National API Elected Officials Summit

  • Restaurant Week

How will APEC impact San Francisco?

The conference’s organizers and many SF city leaders are touting APEC as potential boon to the city’s economy and a chance to rewrite the negative “doom loop” narrative currently attached to the city. However, the meeting is set to heavily impact life in the city in the coming days.

Widespread road closures, including impacts to traffic on the Bay Bridge, and disruptions to public transportation, are expected as part of the enhanced safety measures around APEC. There will also be major disruptions in the area around the Moscone Center South of Market and around Nob Hill.

City leaders are advising commuters and residents to avoid driving to the city while the meeting is going on and to take public transportation instead.

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