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Singapore reaffirms support for ADB initiatives

Sunday, May 7, 2017 - 17:20

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THE Singapore government will continue to collaborate with the Asian Development Bank (ADB), particularly in catalysing private sector funding and to provide sustainable urban solutions.

THE Singapore government will continue to collaborate with the Asian Development Bank (ADB), particularly in catalysing private sector funding and to provide sustainable urban solutions.

ADB Singapore governor and Finance Minister Heng Sweet Keat made the point on Saturday at the 50th annual meeting of the ADB board of governors.

In his speech, Mr Heng said ADB's draft strategy paper, Strategy 2030, outlined initiatives it should adopt to advance economic, social and institutional development of its members.

One of them is the growing infrastructure financing needs in the region, which is expected to rise to US$26 trillion by 2030.

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By improving engagements with the private sector, governments can "enlist the private sector to design and implement innovative infrastructure solutions", the minister said.

He also called on continued efforts to "enhance the capacity of capital market regulators and to support the Asean Capital Markets Forum's (ACMF) implementation of regional integration activities such as the Asean Collective Investment Scheme; Streamlined Review Framework for Asean Common Prospectus; and the promotion of green bond issuance by Asean issuers".

Another point made - how Asia's rapid urbanisation is driving up the need for sustainable urban solutions and financing.

Mr Heng said Strategy 2030's proposal to add value through facilitating the transfer of technology and knowledge in sustainable urban solutions is timely.

"Where it may be of benefit to fellow members, we stand ready to contribute as a knowledge partner to share our experience in long-term planning and urban governance, in areas such as water, greening and solid waste management. We hope to continue enhancing our partnership through research institutions and platforms such as the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, Third Country Training Programmes and the Singapore Water Academy to catalyse broader adoption of financially and environmentally sustainable practices," he said.

He added that Singapore remains "an attentive student" in the urban solutions space, among other areas, and that it hopes to grow from insights and experience of fellow ADB members.

Mr Heng was in Yokohama, Japan, to attend the meetings of Asean+3 finance ministers, central bank governors and the ADB. It was his first overseas trip since recovering from a stroke in May last year.

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