- February 1 - February 4, 2018
- April 16 - April 19, 2018
- July 23 - July 26, 2018
- October 15 - October 17, 2018
Finance Ministers Meeting
- November 12 - November 13, 2018
ABAC 2017 Report to APEC Economic Leaders: Creating New Dynamism, Fostering a Shared Future
ABAC MEMBERSHIP INFORMATION
L-R: Previous ABAC USA Members Ed Rapp of Caterpillar, Peggy Johnson of Microsoft, and Bart Peterson of Eli Lilly attend the ABAC III Meeting in July 2014.
ABAC USA members are appointed by the White House to serve a two-year term, with the option to extend for a third year. The National Center for APEC coordinates the search for a new ABAC USA member whenever a position becomes available. In identifying the three U.S. members, the desired combination of U.S. members is typically a senior executive from one large manufacturing company, one financial service industry firm, and one small/medium-sized business.
While the demands of this position are considerable, the long-term benefits derived from ABAC are also substantial.
Become a part of the ABAC network: ABAC USA members become part of a network that includes some of the most prominent, influential, and important business people in a region where relationships are critical to doing business. Most ABAC members are handpicked by the leaders of their respective countries and have unparalleled access to their governments and key policymakers.
Engage directly with APEC Leaders: ABAC participates in an annual face-to-face meeting with the 21 APEC presidents and prime ministers. The informal dialogue has been an established element of the APEC Leaders' Meeting for over 10 years.
Shape the public policy agenda: ABAC USA members have the opportunity to advance issues of importance to their own industry.
Advise U.S. government and lead U.S. industry: The U.S. government looks to the ABAC USA members as spokespersons for the U.S. business community on trade and economic policy issues in the Asia-Pacific. ABAC members also head private sector delegations to APEC meetings and lead briefing sessions with U.S. cabinet and sub-cabinet officials.
ABAC membership requires a significant time commitment. In some cases, certain ABAC responsibilities may be delegated to an Alternate ABAC Member which would allow an ABAC member to minimize time out of the office to as few as 12 days per year.
ABAC Meetings: ABAC meetings are held four times a year. A typical ABAC meeting would begin with a welcome reception on the first evening, an informal discussion session, an opening plenary session, committee meetings on Day 2, working group meetings on Day 3 and finish on Day 4 with a closing plenary, a press conference and a farewell lunch. Each principal can have one official alternate designated to serve in their place when the principal is unable to attend a meeting, but alternates do not hold the same status as ABAC members and those who send alternates to more than one or two meetings a year tend to significantly diminish their position on ABAC.
Outreach: To ensure the wider U.S. business community has an effective means of informing our ABAC representatives about their concerns on APEC policy issues, NCAPEC hosts several outreach sessions for ABAC members each year. The primary strategy session with U.S. business and government is the Executive Roundtable, held at the beginning of each year. Additionally, NCAPEC organizes quarterly outreach events in Washington, D.C. and conducts outreach to the expatriate U.S. business community in the cities where ABAC meetings are held.
The National Center for APEC is the Secretariat for ABAC USA. NCAPEC employs two permanent senior staff dedicated to supporting ABAC. NCAPEC also provides support for all ABAC USA members at each ABAC meeting. Members normally dedicate at least one corporate staff member to focus on ABAC responsibilities. In collaboration with NCAPEC, these staff members conduct a significant amount of work between ABAC meetings to prepare papers and develop consensus positions on issues.
ABAC membership requires funds for three separate expenses. The first expense is the cost of attending the meetings themselves -- travel, hotel, etc. for the ABAC member and corporate staff. The second expense is for the ABAC International Secretariat, based in Manila. ABAC uses the "APEC formula" to fund the Secretariat, which means U.S. members pay 17.9% of the total annual budget. For the previous two years, the total cost to the U.S. has been approximately $91,000, which the current three ABAC USA members divide equally among themselves. The three ABAC USA members may re-evaluate how these costs will be paid and how they divide the cost. Thirdly, ABAC members may be approached to sponsor various APEC-related events in the U.S. and in the region each year, such as the CEO Summit event held on the sidelines of the APEC Leaders' meeting, U.S.-ABAC Outreach events, and the U.S. Executive Roundtable, among others.
Please feel free to contact the National Center for APEC if you would like to discuss ABAC membership further.