The Asian Development Bank is finalising its Strategy 2030, which calls for support for small island developing states (SIDS) and countries in fragile and conflict-affected situations.
This was revealed by ADB President Takehiko Nakao during the 28th Pacific Developing Member Countries (DMCs) Meeting with ADB Management in Manila.
“This year, our focus is on the future. We are finalising Strategy 2030, ADB’s long-term strategy that defines how we will respond to the changing development needs across the region.
For our DMCs in the Pacific region, Strategy 2030 calls for ADB to prioritise support for Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and countries in fragile and conflict-affected situations (FCAS), said Nakao.
He said ADB is strengthening its financing, business processes and human resources to better support Pacific DMCs.
“First, ADB will further expand the amount of concessional financing available to our Pacific DMCs. To assist small states, we are working to increase country base allocations for grants and concessional loans from the current US$6 million to US$13 million a year per country.
“Also, based on your request at our meeting in Yokohama, we will consider measures of fragility and vulnerability in decisions on the eligibility and allocation of concessional resources. This will contribute to more favorable pricing of finance to SIDS and FCAS countries.
“Second, we will continue to tailor our business processes to meet the needs and constraints of our Pacific DMCs. To improve project readiness, for example, we are increasingly using project design advances (PDAs) before project financing is approved.
“To simplify procurement, we have streamlined the tendering process for civil works and goods, which will also benefit local contractors and suppliers. As we continue to roll out ADB’s new procurement policy, we will be introducing advanced and cleaner technologies in the Pacific. To support project implementation, we are providing more on-the-job training to our counterpart staff in executing agencies.
Third, ADB will continue to strengthen deployment of our human resources in the Pacific. As you know, we have three resident missions (Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Timor-Leste) and four extended missions (Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu). Based on the positive experience we have had with our four extended missions in the region, we will establish development coordination offices with ADB staff in all of the eleven smaller Pacific DMCs. This will ensure our physical presence in every Pacific DMC,” President Nakao told Ministers from the Pacific in Manila.
Nakao said last year, the Pacific identified eight priorities for ADB support and is addressing the remaining five priorities by pursuing new approaches and modalities that better respond to the needs in the Pacific.
“First, we are working with the Green Climate Fund (GCF) to clarify their funding criteria and to expedite their review of proposals and disbursement of funds.
“Second, we are leveraging ICT investments to expand applications for e-governance, e-education, e-health, and e-commerce across the Pacific.
“Third, we are facilitating regional dialogue on de-risking, anti-money laundering, and combating financing for terrorism.
“Fourth, we are promoting greater private sector investment in the region, as well as public–private partnerships.
And fifth, we are also supporting more peer-to-peer learning, and our new Pacific Fellows Programme will help build capacities of senior government officials from the region,” he said.