The APPF is a loosely-structured and non-exclusive forum of national parliamentarians who participate either as delegates of their parliaments or in their personal capacities. The APPF, which was founded by the former Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone, seeks to provide opportunities for national parliamentarians of the Asia Pacific region to identify and discuss matters of common concern and interest and to highlight them in a global context; to deepen their understanding of the policy concerns, interests and experiences of the countries of the region; to examine the critical political, social, and cultural developments resulting from economic growth and integration; to encourage and promote regional cooperation at all levels on matters of common concern to the region; and to play the roles of national parliamentarians in furthering in their respective countries a sense of regional cohesion, understanding and cooperation.
The APPF acts to promote greater regional identification and cooperation with particular focus on: cooperation for the further advancement of peace, freedom, democracy, and prosperity; open and non-exclusive cooperation for the expansion of free trade and investment, and sustainable development and sound environmental practices; and non-military cooperation, which gives due consideration to issues relating to regional peace and security.
The founding charter of the APPF is the Tokyo Declaration, a document signed by 59 parliamentarians from fifteen nations, which sets up the basic structure of the organization. To a great extent, the APPF acts as the legislative branch of the APEC, and keeps close ties with other regional integration institutions such as the ASEAN, SPF, PECC, and PBEC, even though it maintains an independent agenda. .