Committees

The Third Session of ESCAP's Committee on Social Development took place from 18-20 August 2014 in Bangkok, Thailand.
Photo Credit: UN ESCAP/Christian Dohrmann

The Commission restructured the conference structure of the Commission to be fit for the evolving post-2015 development agenda with nine committees through resolution E/ESCAP/RES/71/1, adopted in May 2015:

The Committees meet biennially and within their respective areas of purview, they:

  • Review and analyse regional trends;
  • Identify priorities and emerging issues and consult on regional approaches, taking into consideration subregional aspects;
  • Promote regional dialogue, including its subregional synergies, and an exchange of experiences on policies and programmes;
  • Consider common regional positions as inputs to global processes and promote regional followup to their outcomes;
  • Propose issues for consideration by the Commission as possible resolutions;
  • Monitor the implementation of Commission resolutions;
  • Promote a collaborative approach to addressing the development challenges of the region, where appropriate, between Governments and civil society, the private sector and the United Nations and other international institutions at the regional and subregional levels.

Committee on Macroeconomic Policy, Poverty Reduction and Financing for Development:

The Committee on Macroeconomic Policy, Poverty Reduction and Financing for Development addresses the following issues:

  • Experiences and practices in formulating and implementing macroeconomic policies to reduce poverty and achieve sustainable and inclusive development;
  • Regional economic development policies and options;
  • Financing for development, including enhancing domestic fiscal resources; increasing social impact investment by the private sector; and accessing regional financing vehicles, arrangements and funds;
  • Experiences and practices in developing regulations and institutions to deepen and strengthen the region’s capital markets;
  • Review of pro-poor economic growth policies, particularly in countries with special needs;
  • Policy options and programmes for reducing rural poverty, including those with a gender dimension, through the development of sustainable agriculture.

The Committee is serviced by the Macroeconomic Policy and Financing for Development Division.

Committee on Trade and Investment:

The Committee on Trade and Investment addresses the following issues:

  • Regional cooperative mechanisms and agreements in trade, investment and finance, including the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement;
  • Policy options on trade and investment, enterprise development and finance;
  • Policy options and strategies for sustainable economic growth and rural poverty reduction through agro-technology transfer and agro-based enterprise development;

The Committee is serviced by the Trade and Investment Division.

Committee on Transport:

The Committee on Transport addresses the following issues:

  • Transport policy options and programmes, including the evolving post-2015 development agenda, and regional agreements and mandates;
  • The Asian Highway, Trans-Asian Railway and other initiatives, including inter-island shipping and maritime transport promoted by the Commission for planning and financing integrated intermodal transport and logistics systems;
  • Measures to improve road safety and the efficiency of transport operations and logistics;
  • Support for the accession and implementation of international transport agreements;
  • Harmonization of transport standards and documents;
  • Applications of new transport technologies, including intelligent transport systems;
  • Private sector participation for financing and maintaining infrastructure, including through public-private partnerships.

The Committee is serviced by the Transport Division.

Committee on Environment and Development:

The Committee on Environment and Development addresses the following issues:

  • Policies and strategies for enhancing environmental sustainability of economic and social development, including climate change mitigation and adaptation;
  • Policies and strategies for sustainable management of natural resources including water;
  • Policies and strategies for promoting inclusive and sustainable urban development.

The Committee is serviced by the Environment and Development Division.

Committee on Information and Communications Technology, Science, Technology and Innovation:

The Committee on Information and Communications Technology, Science, Technology and Innovation addresses the following issues:

  • Integration of information and communications technology-related issues in development policies, plans and programmes;
  • Transfer and application of information and communications technology at the regional and subregional levels;
  • Information and communications technology, including space applications, for disaster risk reduction;
  • Development of human and institutional capacity in the use of information and communications technology and in the use of science and technology for innovation;
  • Policy options and strategies for enhancing cooperation on the generation of and access to science, technology and innovation for sustainable development, including regional mechanisms for technology transfer;
  • Mainstreaming of science, technology and innovation issues in development policies, strategies and plans.

The Committee is serviced by the Trade, Investment and Innovation Division; and Information and Communications Technology and Disaster Risk Reduction Division.

Committee on Disaster Risk Reduction:

The Committee on Disaster Risk Reductions addresses the following issues:

  • Policy options and strategies on multi-hazard disaster risk reduction and mitigation;
  • Regional cooperation mechanisms for disaster risk management, including space and other technical support systems;
  • Multi-hazard assessment, preparedness, early warning and response to disaster risks.

The Committee is serviced by the Information and Communications Technology and Disaster Risk Reduction Division.

Committee on Social Development:

The Committee on Social Development addresses the following issues:

  • Review the regional implementation of the internationally agreed goals and commitments on social development;
  • Assess population and development trends, including international migration and its impact on development;
  • Address issues of inequality and promote the social inclusion of youth, persons with disabilities, older persons and other vulnerable social groups;
  • Promote gender equality and women’s empowerment;
  • Strengthen social protection and health systems.

The Committee is serviced by the Social Development Division.

Committee on Statistics:

The Committee on Statistics addresses the following issues:

Ensure that by 2020 all countries in the region have the capability to provide a basic range of population, economic, social and environmental statistics; Create a more adaptive and cost-effective information management environment for national statistical offices through stronger collaboration. The Committee is serviced by the Statistics Division.

Committee on Energy:

The Committee on Energy addresses the following issues:

  • Assist in the development of strategies towards attaining internationally agreed development goals concerning energy;
  • Promote policy dialogues and networking among member States to develop a regional cooperation framework to enhance energy security, with a view towards promoting greater use of sustainable energy resources, including universal access to energy services, improving energy efficiency and scaling up the use of renewable energy, particularly through data and policy analysis, information exchanges and best practices;
  • Identify policy options to strengthen intergovernmental frameworks to promote regional energy connectivity in order to develop a supportive mechanism for regional economic cooperation and integration;
  • Support the implementation of the Asian and Pacific Energy Forum and other regional agreements and mandates including the evolving post-2015 development agenda, promoted by the Commission for regional cooperation for enhanced energy security and the sustainable use of energy;
  • Identify policy options, strategies, policy dialogues and knowledge platforms to promote access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all including renewable energy, energy efficiency, and advanced and cleaner fossil fuel technologies;
  • Identify policies and strategies to promote investment in energy infrastructure and clean energy technologies.

The Committee is serviced by the Energy Division.