How does a country become a member of the APO?
Membership in the organization is open to countries that accept the obligations contained in the Convention on the Asian Productivity Organization and the proceedings of the annual Governing Body Meeting (GBM) and, in the judgment of the organization, are able to carry out these obligations. Countries are admitted to membership in the APO subject to approval of two-thirds of the directors of the Governing Body.
In broad terms, the application goes through three stages:
- Submit a note verbale or letter embodying the intent of your government to the APO.
- In close consultation with the APO, individually discuss the details of your country’s membership. These bilateral talks will include discussions of country-specific details to ascertain, among other aspects, setting up of an NPO, specific areas of expertise that can be shared with members, and membership contribution.
- Membership must be approved by two-thirds of the directors of the Governing Body under Article 46 of the Convention on the APO. The vote can be submitted by the Secretariat to the directors either through a circular or as an agenda item at the GBM.
What Are the Duties and Obligations of Member Governments?
- Each member designates a representative to serve as the APO director for that country, and each director is a member of the Governing Body (the supreme organ of the organization). A director may be replaced at any time with another director designated by a member (refer to Roles of APO Directors).
- Each member is entitled to designate an alternate director as its representative with authority to act in the absence of the director to whom he/she is alternate, with all the powers of that director.
- Each member may nominate a liaison officer to facilitate matters relating to the APO (refer to roles of APO Liaison Officers).
- Each member may nominate an NPO and an NPO head to implement productivity improvement programs and spearhead the productivity movement in the country (refer to Roles of NPOs and Heads of NPOs).
- The membership contribution of a Member is based on the Contribution Formula determined by the Governing Body.
- Each member extends to the APO and its Secretariat staff within its territory the privileges, immunities, and facilities to be determined in separate agreements allowing them to fulfill the functions and purposes of the organization.
- Each member is expected to host at least one multi-country project a year, bearing all local implementing costs, including participants’ per diem allowances and local faculty/resource persons’ costs.
- All members are eligible for participation in APO projects under the conditions set in the Project Regulations of the APO.
APO Membership Benefits and Values: Why Your Country Should Join the APO
- Access to APO data & research
APO members can cooperate bilaterally under the Bilateral Cooperation between NPOs Program and Member Country Support Program as well as through Individual Observational Study Missions. Member countries have the opportunity to participate in the compilation of the annual APO Productivity Databook, a globally recognized report that member countries can utilize to create national economic policies and rely on as a guide to international benchmarking.
- Access experts and industry thought leaders through the APO network
Experts assigned to APO projects come from within and outside the Asia-Pacific region, allowing the development of professional networks covering the globe. Projects are attended by participants from diverse backgrounds, including NPOs, government, academia, and private-sector companies, facilitating professional linkages, creating business opportunities, and offering opportunities for joint research.
- Receive personalized, tailored guidance based on your country’s requirements and circumstances
Member countries can request country-specific projects based on their specific needs and productivity requirements, such as the frequently requested Technical Expert Services and in-country training programs.
Roles of APO Directors
APO directors are expected to undertake the following activities:
- Consult with the government authorities in their countries to determine, based on the national productivity movement in general and the activities of its NPO in particular, the nature and type of activities that the APO is expected to undertake (i.e., in the biennial program plans).
- On behalf of their governments, make commitments on the annual membership contributions, offer or request cooperation and assistance to and from both the APO and other member countries, and make any additional financial commitments for implementing APO program activities.
- Regularly request and receive from various national agencies/institutions, including the NPO, information on the activities of agencies/institutions engaged in productivity-related activities in general and those of the APO in particular.
- Request and receive detailed reports from the heads of NPOs on the results of the annual Workshop Meeting of Heads of NPOs(WSM) to serve as one basis on which to conduct occasional consultation and coordination with relevant government authorities as well as the private sector to formulate policy on APO program activities and their governments’ financial commitments to the APO.
- Receive government endorsement and authorization of that policy, which will become the terms of reference when attending Governing Body Meetings and when making decisions on APO matters via correspondence.
- Report to the relevant government authorities the results of the Governing Body Meetings and recommend actions to be taken by the government to increase productivity and promote the productivity movement both through national efforts and through mutual cooperation with other APO members.
Roles of APO Liaison Officers
At present, liaison officers are either NPO or government staff, depending upon the convenience of each government. The choice of nominating a liaison officer is left entirely to the government concerned.
Liaison officers undertake the following functions:
- APO correspondence, except any requiring a direct response from the APO director, is addressed to liaison officers, who channel the correspondence to the appropriate person or agency.
- Liaison officers may be required to channel correspondence to individuals in the NPO or government, depending upon the project.
- Liaison officers attend to all APO correspondence on nominations of project participants, trainees, and experts on behalf of the government and all physical and financial arrangements necessary to implement the projects after obtaining the necessary clearance from the director.
- Liaison officers provide the APO with data and information on projects held in their countries or on activities connected with APO projects.
Roles of NPOs and Heads of NPOs
- NPOs are national bodies mandated with spearheading the productivity movement in their countries and act as the APO’s planning and implementing agencies.
- The NPO and head of the NPO are appointed by a member government.
- Heads of NPOs are deeply involved in the drafting and implementation of programs and should possess the necessary knowledge to oversee those programs.
- The NPO delegate representing a member country at a WSM should be the head of the NPO who is directly overseeing the operations, planning, and implementation of APO productivity programs.