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Gender in APEC
Women Leader's Network Meeting(WLN)
9th WLN Meeting
10th WLN Meeting
Gender Focal Point Network(GFPN)

Since its establishment in 1989 to date, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation has always been an organization which puts great emphasis on consensus, respect towards voluntary actions, and also honors the absence of formal, binding commitment. However, time progresses and the context of the region continued to evolve, APEC continued to expand the range of issues of concern-originally it was mainly focused on the liberalization of trade in the region, and it gradually expanded its realm to economic and technological cooperation, social security, environmental issues, gender issues, and the most recent concerns of anti-terrorism. Women Leaders・ Network (WLN), is in fact, a product of the wide range of issues that became of concern to APEC.  A network of women leaders hailing from their respective economic bodies, representing leaders with areas of expertise such as the private sector, government, and academia has convened to answer to the ever increasing focus on gender-related issues in the region.

      The Women Leader・s Network, upon its establishment, initially intended to :search for methods and strategies in order to facilitate the inclusion of women・s voices and expectations into all of the crucial, key decisions made within APEC in order to ensure women・s adequate participation and integration in the organization. After the first Women Leaders・ Network meeting, the participants collectively concluded that it is crucial for the APEC leaders to clearly recognize the multidisciplinary nature of gender as an issue. Therefore, they strongly recommended that the gender perspective should be integrated into the different working groups and other pre-existing structures within APEC; in particular, they stressed the need to include gender perspective in three particular working groups- human resource development, small and medium enterprises, and industrial technology.

Being governed under APEC, an international organization which operates with great flexibility, the Women Leaders・ Network also envisioned itself as a highly flexible organization which would function mainly as an advisory organization; through which, WLN sought to establish a strategic partnership that included common visions, goals, and issues with APEC. One of the most important task of the WLN is that brings the conclusion and collective advice made in the Women Leaders・ Network meeting to the APEC senior leaders・ meeting, ministerial meeting, and furthermore each economic body representative also brings the WLN advice back to their respective countries and implements them in their respective economic bodies.@To date, the Women Leaders・ Network is not an official working group within the APEC organizational mechanism; in fact, it remains to be an activity beyond the jurisdiction of the APEC organizational structure. Nonetheless, activities sponsored by the Women Leaders・ Network are always included in the APEC official website. Furthermore, when conferences are held by the Women Leader・s Network, the host country will provide the equal diplomatic and administrative support as it would with other APEC sponsored conferences and events. Organizationally speaking, the Women Leaders・ Network is a loose organization without a permanent secretariat of its own, work procedures are passed down through experience of the predecessors. Furthermore, each year・s Women Leaders・ Network chairperson is always appointed by the present APEC hosting economic body; recently, the hosting economic bodies・ government has also begin to play a progressively influential role in the process.



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