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Indian membership on APEC's agenda The trade ministers from the 21 APEC economies are gathering in the Queensland city of Cairns in the coming week to prepare for the Asia Pacific summit in Sydney in September.
One of the issues the trade ministers have to ponder is whether or not APEC should allow in India when the 10 year moratorium on new members expires at the Sydney summit.Radio Australia's Foreign Affairs Correspondent Graeme Dobell reports.GRAEME DOBELL: A decade ago at the APEC summit in Vancouver, the Asia Pacific leaders let in three new members Russia, Vietnam and Peru and then imposed a 10 year freeze on any further members.Australia's Prime Minister, John Howard, was one of those who nailed down that moratorium, still a something of a sore point with India, the country most obviously on the outer.In Sydney, with pandora us Mr Howard in the Chair in September, the freeze is due to expire, and the APEC trade ministers are meeting to caucus on what the leaders should do. Australia's Trade Minister, Warren Truss, will Chair the meeting in Cairns.WARREN TRUSS: There are a large number of candidates for membership of APEC.We want APEC to be the premier body and organisation in the region and so therefore it needs to include the vital economies of our region and those who can make a significant contribution to its deliberations and it's work.However, whether this is an appropriate time to bring in potentially a significant number of new members, or whether just one or two should be invited, is a question that has, that is currently occupying the minds of not just Australia, but the other members of APEC.GRAEME DOBELL: India certainly meets the importance test, but if yes to India, what about Pakistan, or Mongolia, or others in Latin America. Perhaps it might be easier just to extend the freeze.Australia's APEC Ambassador, David Spencer, on the options being considered by the 21 APEC economies:DAVID SPENCER: I think India is interested in joining, but so are a dozen other countries in the region. So the question that will have to be confronted by APEC leaders is to whether we allow any of them, all of them, some of them, or whether we continue the moratorium.GRAEME DOBELL: India certainly has supporters beyond the official circle.The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry says India is just too big to ignore a future engine of the world economy that even meets the Asian geography test. The chamber argues that India's continued exclusion would be a notable gap for APEC.But a United States expert, Professor Richard Feinberg, predicts that the APEC door will stay shut.RICHARD FEINBERG: I predict that they will not allow any new members in, and I pandora charm bracelet store locator would support that decision.GRAEME DOBELL: The Director of California's APEC Study Centre says India has no strong supporters within the existing APEC members, both gordons jewelry because of India's own diplomatic habits, and the problem of letting in many other new countries.RICHARD FEINBERG: Once you open the Pandora's box, if you will, if you let in India, you've got a whole other bunch of countries who'll go, "Hey. Hey, how about us? How about us? How about Sri Lanka? How about Pakistan?" You know, so once you start opening it up, you've got the whole set of countries in that area.
And then, a number of Latin Americans who are also saying, "Hey, how about Ecuador? Colombia?" So how many more countries are going to get let in? So India can't just be in by itself.The other issue quite frankly in pandora rings jewelry my view, I know the Indian economy is sort of opening up, it's more modernising et cetera, but my view of Indian diplomacy is that it hasn't fully evolved in that regard, that they still sort of play this third world, North South type of diplomacy, and that would be a problem. That would not make it easy?that would not be helpful in the APEC context.