$175 billion pledged for infrastructure

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Traffic jam in Ho Chin Minh City, Vietnam

The Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Islamic Development Bank and other multilateral development banks said they will release $175 billion in loans for developing countries over the next ten years to improve and enhance their transportation infrastructure and make it sustainable.

This was the outcome of the UN Rio+20 summit held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from June 20-22. The ten-year commitment was made by the ADB, the African Development Bank, CAF–Development Bank of Latin America, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the European Investment Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Islamic Development Bank and the World Bank.

The money will be used to improve public transport systems, railways and inland waterways, Tyrrell Duncan, director of transport and communications at the ADB, said. Focus lies also on constructing or upgrading bicycle and walking infrastructure, promoting energy-efficient vehicles and fuels as well as road safety.

Rapid motorisation is creating more and more congestion, air pollution, traffic accidents and greenhouse gas emissions, especially in developing countries, and global emissions from the sector are projected to increase 50 per cent by 2030, ADB president Haruhiko Kuroda said in a press release after the decision was made.

Taken together, the losses attributable to pollution and congestion account for more than ten per cent of the regions’ GDP. The transport sector also accounts for nearly two-thirds of total oil consumption in the world.

Overloaded bus in Myanmar

In Asia Pacific, rising incomes are doubling motor vehicle fleets every five to seven years. Motorisation is causing Asia’s share of the global vehicle fleet to rise, growing from nine per cent in 1980 to 46 per cent by 2030. In some countries, the current trend growth in motor vehicles is almost four times faster than population growth. In addition, nearly 2,000 people are killed each day in Asia due to traffic accidents, the ADB said.

Transport needs massive investments, particularly in emerging economies. Over the next ten years, some $2.5 trillion of transport investment is required in developing Asia alone, according to the ADB. Developing countries thus must be given the opportunity “to leapfrog to a greener future of less motorisation, shorter commutes, and more energy efficient transport systems.”

The ADB is already supporting green transportation solutions across Asia, including low-cost electric vehicles in the Philippines, urban metrorail systems in Vietnam, bus rapid transit systems in Mongolia and Bangladesh, and inland waterway transport in China.

The pledge was one of the largest financial commitments coming out of Rio+20.

“The UN is bringing all key stakeholders to the table to work in common cause for the common good,” said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon. “This initiative shows the power of partnership and ability of the United Nations to spearhead transformational change,” he added.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Traffic jam in Ho Chin Minh City, Vietnam

The Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Islamic Development Bank and other multilateral development banks said they will release $175 billion in loans for developing countries over the next ten years to improve and enhance their transportation infrastructure and make it sustainable.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Traffic jam in Ho Chin Minh City, Vietnam

The Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Islamic Development Bank and other multilateral development banks said they will release $175 billion in loans for developing countries over the next ten years to improve and enhance their transportation infrastructure and make it sustainable.

This was the outcome of the UN Rio+20 summit held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from June 20-22. The ten-year commitment was made by the ADB, the African Development Bank, CAF–Development Bank of Latin America, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the European Investment Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Islamic Development Bank and the World Bank.

The money will be used to improve public transport systems, railways and inland waterways, Tyrrell Duncan, director of transport and communications at the ADB, said. Focus lies also on constructing or upgrading bicycle and walking infrastructure, promoting energy-efficient vehicles and fuels as well as road safety.

Rapid motorisation is creating more and more congestion, air pollution, traffic accidents and greenhouse gas emissions, especially in developing countries, and global emissions from the sector are projected to increase 50 per cent by 2030, ADB president Haruhiko Kuroda said in a press release after the decision was made.

Taken together, the losses attributable to pollution and congestion account for more than ten per cent of the regions’ GDP. The transport sector also accounts for nearly two-thirds of total oil consumption in the world.

Overloaded bus in Myanmar

In Asia Pacific, rising incomes are doubling motor vehicle fleets every five to seven years. Motorisation is causing Asia’s share of the global vehicle fleet to rise, growing from nine per cent in 1980 to 46 per cent by 2030. In some countries, the current trend growth in motor vehicles is almost four times faster than population growth. In addition, nearly 2,000 people are killed each day in Asia due to traffic accidents, the ADB said.

Transport needs massive investments, particularly in emerging economies. Over the next ten years, some $2.5 trillion of transport investment is required in developing Asia alone, according to the ADB. Developing countries thus must be given the opportunity “to leapfrog to a greener future of less motorisation, shorter commutes, and more energy efficient transport systems.”

The ADB is already supporting green transportation solutions across Asia, including low-cost electric vehicles in the Philippines, urban metrorail systems in Vietnam, bus rapid transit systems in Mongolia and Bangladesh, and inland waterway transport in China.

The pledge was one of the largest financial commitments coming out of Rio+20.

“The UN is bringing all key stakeholders to the table to work in common cause for the common good,” said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon. “This initiative shows the power of partnership and ability of the United Nations to spearhead transformational change,” he added.

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