Australian secondary school students are being instructed to learn more about Australia's links with the Asia-Pacific region and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum.
Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer on Wednesday launched a new education resource for Australian secondary school students entitled "APEC: Strengthening our Community, Building a Sustainable Future."
The resource is presently being distributed to 3,000 secondary schools in Australia to enable students to deepen their knowledge of Australia's links with the Asia-Pacific region and the APEC forum.
"It is important that young Australians learn more about the Asia-Pacific region and how APEC, the pre-eminent body for economic cooperation in the region, contributes to Australia's economic prosperity through its integration with the region," Downer said in a statement.
"Australia has benefited from dynamic regional economic growth, with APEC's 21 member economies accounting for 69 percent of our total trade worth 250 billion Australian dollars (208 billion U.S. dollars) a year," he said.
"There is no doubt that Australia's future lies in deepening our understanding of the region, and creating even stronger links with the people of our region," he stressed.
The resource introduces young Australians to APEC in an easily accessible form and in a way that fits into their existing studies of regional and global issues, according to Downer.
As host of the APEC forum this year, Australia is staging more than 30 major APEC meetings spanning more than 100 days and involving over 15,000 delegates.
The year will culminate in the APEC Economic Leaders Meeting in Sydney, Australia's largest city, in September.