Investors eyed for green growth
The new five-year Environment Agenda focusing on filling investment gaps for green growth in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), has been endorsed by environment ministers from the subregion.
The Core Environment programme (CEP) Strategic Framework and Action Plan 2018-2022, the third phases of the programme initiated in 2006 and administered by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), was approved by attending ministers during the 5th Greater Mekong Subregion Environment Ministers's Meeting (EMM-5) in Chiang Mai province which ended on Monday.
The CEP is in its third phase. It aims to support the environmental cooperation effort in the Greater Mekong Subregion, which consists of Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.
The programme consists of US$540 million worth of projects which will focus on land-use management, waste management, pollution control, and climate proofing of rural infrastructure.
It also will focus on the preparation and funding of projects that will reduce investment gaps for green growth in the subregion. The agenda also aims to push forward green investments and increase environmental cooperation to forge a pathway to sustainable growth.
Ramesh Subramaniam, director-general of the ADB's Southeast Asia Department, said the programme will contribute to achieving poverty reduction by focussing on inclusive economic and sustainable growth and regional cooperation.
"The first two phases contributed to reducing poverty of over 30,000 people in the subregion," he said.
The project also contributed to biodiversity conservation by creating 2.6 million hectares of biodiversity corridors in seven transboundary landscapes.
Surasak Kanchanarat, the Thai minister of natural resources and environment, stressed the subregion's need to balance economic growth and sustainability.
Mr Ramesh said there is a need to leverage new technologies to better manage environmental challenges to decarbonise growth.
The Sixth GMS Leaders' Summit is due in March in Vietnam.