Yojana Sharma. Leaders of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) grouping have called for greater cross-border higher education cooperation in advance of building an Asia-Pacific higher education space that would include South East Asian nations, India, China, Japan and South Korea as well as Pacific Rim countries such as the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Cooperation would include enhancing the “mobility of students, researchers and education providers within APEC through the development of higher education cooperation,” according to the 8 September final communiqué issued at the end of a two-day summit held in the Russian city of Vladivostock. The leaders acknowledged the role of education as an “essential driver of innovative” growth in the Asia Pacific region.
“All APEC economies stand to gain from enhancing collaboration on cross-border education,” a special annex to the formal declaration said.
“Education as a fundamentally important component of economic activity accounts for almost 7% of GDP in APEC economies. Cooperation in the education sectors of APEC economies fosters innovative growth as students, researchers and education providers build scientific, technological and linguistic communities,” it said.