New Delhi: Subhash Chandra Garg Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), made the intervention on behalf of Indian the Plenary Session of the 51st Annual Meeting of Asian Development Bank (ADB) yesterday in Manila and welcomed the ADB’s Strategy 2030. Garg is currently leading an Indian delegation to the 51st Annual Meeting of ADB. All the Governors present made their interventions. He reiterated that ADB should continue to focus on its key areas of strength like urban infrastructure, energy, transport, disaster management, etc. While appreciating the role of ADB in helping developing member countries in building infrastructure, he sought Bank’s increased assistance for the capacity building efforts.
In his intervention, Garg highlighted the need for taking into account the likely impacts of the technical advancements that are taking place owing to Artificial Intelligence, robotics, etc. so that ADB can equip the member countries to reap maximum benefits out of these technological advancements.
He further stated that the Strategy should focus more on West Asia and South Asia as interventions in East Asia are already done fairly well. Garg also emphasized that the private sector operations of ADB as envisaged in the strategy should be enhanced and there should be more focus on equity participation. He also stated that there is absolutely no case for an increase in the cost of various loan instruments as there is no capital deficiency in ADB.
Garg also attended the Opening Session of the Board of Governors, which was followed by the Business Session. During the Business Session, Garg applauded ADB for focusing on poverty eradication, quality jobs and increased support for social sectors while reiterating its commitment to building the infrastructure.
He stressed that ADB should continue to focus on programs of poverty alleviation. He called for a targeted approach towards poverty eradication taking into account the regional imbalances and an absolute number of poor people in Asia and the Pacific.
He also welcomed the collaboration between ADB and the ISA and urged upon ADB to move forward in this direction as expeditiously as possible. He also argued that there is a strong case for ADB to adopt Country Systems for procurements and environmental safeguards.
He also called for greater decentralization in decision-making and strengthening of resident missions of ADB. He also called for concerted efforts towards increasing lending for the private sector in developing member countries.
While welcoming ADB’s pledge to support an inclusive growth, Garg highlighted the need to develop innovative financing instruments to cater to the specific needs and priorities of the member countries.
The Indian delegation also held bilateral meetings with the Japan Bank for International Cooperation and discussed a wide range of bilateral issues.