Oct 18, 2021

The Asia-Pacific Financial Forum (APFF) 2021 China Conference

The Asia-Pacific Financial Forum (APFF) 2021 China Conference

UN-convened Financial Centres for Sustainability (FC4S) was invited to attend the Asia-Pacific Financial Forum (APFF) 2021 China Conference, a high-level hybrid event held on October 14-15. 

The Asia-Pacific Financial Forum (APFF) is a platform for public-private collaboration to accelerate the development of robust and integrated financial markets in the APEC region. It responds to the need for active collaboration among policymakers, regulators and experts from industry and international and academic organizations to address key issues.

The Conference, co-organized by APFF, the China Chamber of International Commerce, the Chinese Academy of Fiscal Sciences and the Society of Public Finance of China, gathered senior representatives of major government, business, and academic institutions to discuss key issues to support the implementation of APEC Finance Ministers’ initiatives across APEC economies, and how collaboration can be strengthened to advance these efforts in the coming years. 

The theme of this year’s APFF was Collaboration Towards Inclusive and Innovative Financial Markets. Speeches and plenary sessions featured topics such as Carbon Neutrality, Green Finance, Digitalization of Finance, SME financing and inclusive Fintech, Credit Information System and Data Security. 

FC4S organized a panel discussion on Developing Robust Carbon Markets, where five experts from China, Mexico, and the US, moderated by our colleague Prajwal Baral, shared their views and work on carbon pricing instruments and market development, focusing on the role of MRV (Monitoring, Reporting, Verification) in ETS building. 

Some key takeaways from this high-level two-day conference:

  • Green Finance: a comprehensive market infrastructure, efficient financial intermediaries and a wide spectrum of financial products are essential to develop green finance in APEC economies, as pointed out by Mr. Hiroshi Nakaso, APFF Chairman and former Deputy Governor of Japan central bank. Mr Nakaso highlighted the significance of transition finance, the crucial roles of banks, and the flexibility of standards to allow better adaption in different economies. 
  • Carbon Market Development: Experts recognised that different economic development stages might shape how to develop carbon pricing mechanisms, instruments, and infrastructure, but also recommended that setting up clear targets and ensuring transparency of price mechanism of Carbon Exchanges is beneficial. On the closed-door panel discussion supported by FC4S, sectoral specialists highlighted the role of MRV (Monitoring, Reporting, Verification) in ETS building. 
  • Macro-economy and green recovery from COVID19: Economists from Japan and China agreed on the importance of stimulating domestic demand and focusing on the supply-side economy. Yang Weimin, Deputy Director of Economic Committee of CPPCC National Committee, suggested that adjusting the national income distribution, especially levelling up the household consumption in the distribution, could be the main boost for sustainable economic growth.