As Prepared for Delivery
Good evening. Welcome to the APEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting gala. And a special welcome to Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi and Mayor London Breed. We’re honored you could join us. It’s personally meaningful to me to conclude the United States’ APEC host year here in the San Francisco Bay Area, which I consider a second home. I spent more than two decades here—from my time teaching at Berkeley to serving as President of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
And it’s especially fitting that we’re at the California Academy of Sciences. The Academy’s Steinhart Aquarium is one of the world’s most biologically diverse aquariums, reflecting two marine ecosystems: the California coast and the Philippine Coral Reef, connected by the Pacific Ocean. And the Academy is a leader in conservation and sustainability, from its educational programming, to partnerships to inform conservation policies, to the physical design of the building we’re in now—which includes a roof of living native plants.
So, being here is a powerful reminder: not only of the ocean that connects our economies and makes us APEC members but also of the important work we are doing through APEC. Climate change poses threats to our homes, our communities, and our livelihoods. From heat waves and droughts here in California to the floods in Indonesia, the physical and economic impacts of climate change are mounting, with implications for the growth and stability of APEC economies.
So, APEC has made addressing climate change a key priority. In 2020, APEC Leaders endorsed the Putrajaya Vision, which centered on sustainable and inclusive growth. In 2022, Leaders adopted the Bangkok Goals for the Bio-Circular-Green Economy. And I am proud that the APEC Finance Track has also taken up climate change so fully this year. Of course, sustainable finance is only one aspect of the much broader work we’ll be discussing this week—from promoting inclusive and sustainable growth to supporting responsible innovation across our economies. And this is all to advance a shared vision of an open, dynamic, resilient, and peaceful Asia-Pacific region.
Welcome again to this beautiful Academy, to a city I consider a second home, and to an APEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting the United States is proud to host. I very much look forward to our discussions tomorrow. And I hope you enjoy our entertainment for the evening. Please join me in welcoming musical guests from the San Francisco Chorus, San Francisco Opera, and San Francisco Symphony.