APEC has focused on institutional, regulatory and policy reforms to encourage efficient functioning of markets and reduce barriers to regional trade since the early 2000s. The APEC Ease of Doing Business Action Plan represents only one set of targets that APEC uses to encourage regulatory reforms. It provides a useful example of the application of Doing Business indicators in setting concrete collective targets and in monitoring and assessing progress. The framework of capacity building activities created through the action plan has proved useful in promoting exchanges between member economies.
The diversity of APEC’s member economies—with different income levels and located in different geographic regions—has contributed to success. By sharing experience and providing assistance to other APEC members, those identiﬁed as champions in each of the priority areas can lift the APEC-wide
performance. Other regional bodies can learn from this model of capacity building. Doing Business
2012 found that in many economies the degree to which regulations and institutions are business-friendly varies fairly widely across different areas of regulation. Regional bodies can take advantage of these differences, encouraging each member economy to capitalize on its strengths by providing assistance in areas of strong performance to members with weaker performance. APEC appears poised to continue its capacity building efforts, with talks already under way on a new phase related to policy implementation.