The forum established by 21 Pacific Rim member economies for promoting free trade throughout the Asia-Pacific region is the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). APEC was formed in 1989. It was formed as a response to the blooming interdependency of the economies of the Asia- Pacific region and also the emergence of regional trade blocs in various parts of the world. Currently, there are 21 members in the forum and collectively account for 50% of the world’s trade. The members, however, need to be a distinctive economy rather than a state.