We, parliamentarians assembled in Tokyo on January 14-15, 1993 to promote dialogue among parliamentarians of the Asia Pacific region:
Recognizing that the international community is in the midst of a historic change following the end of the Cold War and that a variety of significant developments are unfolding in the Asia Pacific region;
Conscious of the need for the Asia-Pacific region to respond aptly to the changing circumstances and to build upon a new order of regional stability and prosperity;
Mindful that interdependence and regional cohesion are growing within this region and are providing a sound basis for increased regional cooperation, as a result of the region's rich diversity in socio-political systems, stages of economic development and cultural heritage; Aware that a number of regional and subregional institutions such as APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation), ASEAN (Association of the South East Asian Nations), SPF (South Pacific Forum), PECC (Pacific Economic Cooperation Council) and PBEC (Pacific Basin Economic Council) are also working to strengthen regional cooperation; and
Convinced that increased dialogue among parliamentarians will add a new dimension to this framework of regional cooperation by bringing together the unique perspectives and insight of parliamentarians throughout the Asia Pacific region, and thereby contribute to the region's peace, stability and prosperity;
Have hereby agreed to establish a forum named the Asia Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF), and declare as follows:
- The APPF will be a loosely-structured and non-exclusive forum of national parliamentarians who will participate either as delegates of their parliaments or in their personal capacities.
Objectives and Activities
- The APPF will seek 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 will operate on the basis of:
- commitment to frank and constructive dialogue;
- equal respect for the views of all participants; and
- full recognition of the roles performed by the governments, business communities, labor organisations, research institutes and others.
- The APPF will act 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.
- Any decision by the APPF will be made by consensus at its annual meetings.
- The APPF will maintain the closest relations with regional institutions, particularly APECC, ASEAN and SPF, but also PECC and PBEC, to ensure a free flow of information between the APPF and these institutions, While the Forum may mutually cooperate with these institutions, it will maintain an independent agenda.
Membership and Participation
- Membership of the APPF will, in principle, be open to all national parliamentarians in the Asia Pacific region, in particular from ASEAN, the APEC group and the South Pacific Forum, who;
- have an active interest in promoting dialogue among parliamentarians in the region; and
- accept the objectives and principles of the APPF as stated in this Declaration.
- Hopeful to see the membership expanded in the future, the APPF will review the membership when necessary.
- The APPF may also invite national parliamentarians of this region to attend its meetings as associate members, observers, or in any other appropriate status as determined by the annual meeting.
- The APPF will meet annually. The host, date and venue of each annual meeting will be determined at the preceding meeting. The host of each annual meeting will chair the meeting.
- The host of an annual meeting will make the necessary arrangements for the meeting. The host will bear the cost of organising the meeting, while the participants will cover their expenses for the meeting.
- An Executive Committee will be established to study matters required for the management of the APPF. The Executive Committee will consist of an appropriate number of members to be chosen at the preceding annual meeting. The Executive Committee will assist the hosts of the annual meeting.
- A President will be elected to represent the APPF and to act as Chairman of the Executive Committee. The President's term will be three years, with reelection possible.
- Working groups may be established, on an ad hoc basis, to examine specific regional issues. These groups will report to annual meetings on their work.
- The Secretariat may be established when necessary.