Ministerial Panels, High-level Events and Side Events

Ministerial Panels and High-level Events

Special, Side and Associated Events




Ministerial Panels and High-level Events

High-level dialogue on regional economic cooperation and integration
16:30-18:00, Tuesday, 17 May 2016 (ESCAP Hall)

The seventy-second session of the Commission, the first session since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development last September offers a unique opportunity to collectively discuss the strategic development priorities, including the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in the Asia-Pacific region.

A key enabler in this process is the regional economic cooperation and integration agenda. Challenges and opportunities brought by issues such as the shared boundaries, development of newer markets, and South-South cooperation, in particular harnessing financing flows and exploiting partnerships in science, technology and innovation offer distinctive potential in effectively realizing the means of implementation for the Goals and the wider 2030 Agenda.

It is against this backdrop that the high-level dialogue, moderated by the Executive Secretary of ESCAP, will discuss the priorities for the region and hear from the panelists, their visions and perspectives on the new global development agenda.

High-level exchange on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in the Asia-Pacific least developed, landlocked developing and Pacific island developing countries
09:00-10:30, Wednesday, 18 May 2016 (ESCAP Hall)

Ministers and senior government officials from the least developed, landlocked developing and Pacific island developing countries in the Asia-Pacific region will collective discuss the relationship between the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and global programmes of action for these sets of countries, including the Istanbul Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries, the Vienna Programme of Action for Landlocked Developing Countries and the SAMOA Pathway. They will also share their unique experiences on national and regional strategies for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific.

Panelists will offer perspectives on the unique challenges in their national context and how these can be overcome, including through a concerted regional approach. The discussion will also feature country-specific pathways for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, taking into account the respective levels of development and existing capacity.

Ministerial roundtable on science, technology and innovation for sustainable development
14:00-15:30, Wednesday, 18 May 2016 (ESCAP Hall)

Business as usual is not an option if the ambitions of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development are to be met. The scale and depth of the goals require a radically different and disruptive approach—the essence of innovation—along with significant scientific breakthroughs and technological advancements. Science, technology and innovation have the potential to increase the efficiency, effectiveness and impact of our efforts to meet the ambitions of the 2030 Agenda, including the Sustainable Development Goals and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, and create benefits for society, economy and the environment. While this potential cannot be debated, there remains a lack of clarity on how best to effectively implement science, technology and innovation for inclusive and sustainable development.

This ministerial roundtable will highlight member States’ experiences with science, technology and innovation policy approaches. It will provide an opportunity to hear from them on the challenges and opportunities they see lying ahead as well as a chance to hear their insights on the role of collaboration in science technology and innovation.

Ministerial panel on the Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific
10:00-11:30, Thursday, 19 May 2016 (ESCAP Hall)

Economic growth and productivity growth in the Asia-Pacific region have declined significantly in the aftermath of the 2008 economic and financial crisis. These declines are worrying as both play a vital role in development. The declines also highlight the Asia-Pacific region’s vulnerability to external shocks stemming from its reliance on exports to developed economies. To make growth more sustainable and inclusive, the region should shift to a development model in which domestic and regional factors play a larger role in driving growth. Fostering domestic demand will, however, require higher levels of productivity, and that these are translated into commensurate increases in real wages. Strengthening productivity is particularly relevant in view of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as investing in the Sustainable Development Goals will foster productivity growth, creating a virtuous cycle between sustainable development and productivity.

The panel will discuss some of the challenges that countries in the region have faced in strengthening productivity growth and shed light on successful policies that have been adopted.

Special, Side and Associated Events

Accelerating Financial Inclusion in Least Developed Countries in Asia and the Pacific: The Role of South-South and Triangular Cooperation
Hosted by the Government of Bangladesh
12:00-13:30, Monday, 16 May 2016 (Conference Room 4)

This side event, hosted by the Government of Bangladesh in collaboration with the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) and ESCAP will explore strategies to promote South-South and Triangular Cooperation to address key areas that accelerate financial inclusion given its importance to foster inclusive growth. Some of these areas include developing national financial inclusion strategies, improving data and analytics capacity to leverage advances in information and communication technologies, investment in innovations to expand the “last mile” business models connecting financial markets with real-economy markets, and improving research on users of financial services.

This event will feature senior policy makers from the region, including from the Pacific island developing countries, United Nations officials, development partners, regulators and private sector representatives. Discussions will focus on national experiences in financial inclusion, lessons learnt and areas to further deep cooperation.

Seventh high-level consultation “G20 Hangzhou Summit: Perspectives from Asia and the Pacific”
Hosted by the Government of China
12:00-13:30, Tuesday, 17 May 2016 (Conference Room 4)

At this special event, the Government of China as the host country of G20 Summit this year, will give briefings on the theme, agenda, expected outcome, and preparation work of the G20 summit to take place in Hangzhou in 4-5 September 2016. Under the theme “Towards an innovative, invigorated, interconnected and inclusive world economy”, the summit will address a number of issues of critical importance for the Asia-Pacific region.

The Belt and Road Initiative: From Vision to Action
Hosted by the Government of China
12:00-13:00, Wednesday, 18 May 2016 (Conference Room 4)

At the side event hosted by China, under the theme of “The Belt and Road Initiative: From Vision to Action”, representatives from government of ESCAP member states, research fellows, United Nations officials, will discuss how the region could better benefit from initiatives on connectivity like the Belt and Road - Challenges and opportunities, to exchange views on how to solve the financial bottlenecks and to identify cooperation areas for ESCAP member States.

Building Regional Tsunami Awareness
Hosted by the Government of Japan
13:00-14:00, Wednesday, 18 May 2016 (Conference Room 3)

In its resolution 70/203, the United Nations General Assembly established 5 November as World Tsunami Awareness Day. Given the low frequency but high impact of tsunamis, there is a constant need to raise awareness at all levels to maintain and further enhance preparedness efforts.

The establishment of this Day is thereby an opportunity to minimize the loss of lives and property as well as arrest the disruption of development momentum due to this disaster by mobilizing a wide range of stakeholders to raise public awareness and address gaps in early warning systems, particularly through regional cooperation and capacity building.

This side event, hosted by Japan and supported by the ESCAP secretariat will raise awareness of the risks posed by tsunamis, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region. The event will feature policy-makers and experts on tsunamis from across the region.

Landlocked developing countries and the One Belt One Road Policy: A corridor towards sustainable development
Hosted by the Government of Mongolia
17:00-18:00, Wednesday, 18 May 2016 (Conference Room 4)

This side event will be an opportunity for the representatives of landlocked developing countries in Asia to examine the economic, social and environmental dimensions of the One Belt, One Road development strategy and framework that was proposed by China in 2013. The countries will discuss these issues with regard to their own development trajectories and explore options in adjusting their development strategies to maximize potential benefits and mitigate risks resulting from the One Belt, One Road.

The side event will make the representatives of the Asian landlocked developing countries aware of the proposed initiatives, which shall be piloted in Lao People’s Democratic Republic and in Mongolia in 2016. They will also get the opportunity to make their comments and remarks on the draft version of the research design and to highlight country-specific issues that have to be taken into consideration.

Transforming Adversity into Disaster and Climate Resilience: Fiji’s road to recovery from Tropical Cyclone Winston
Hosted by the Government of Fiji
09:00-10:00, Thursday, 19 May 2016 (Conference Room 4)

Tropical Cyclone Winston, the most powerful cyclone to strike Fiji in recent time, cut a path of destruction across the country on 20 and 21 February 2016. The experience of Fijian government in mounting a three layered operation--sustaining humanitarian relief, undertaking early recovery, and initiating the long term recovery--is valuable to be shared with other member States. Fiji’s experience and valuable lessons from the response and ongoing recovery highlight areas that have significant implication for policy and regional cooperation.

High-Level Luncheon for Representatives of the Landlocked Developing Countries
Hosted by the International Think Tank for LLDCs
13:00-15:00, 19 May 2016 (Public Foyer, Ground Floor)

The side event aims to raise awareness for the activities of the International Think Tank for Landlocked Developing Countries and its operationalization, goals and its recent activities as well as provide information on the current status of the “Multilateral Agreement on the Establishment of an International Think Tank for Landlocked Developing Countries”.

The event will provide a platform for constructive dialogue on the utilization of the International Think Tank for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Vienna Programme of Action for Landlocked Developing Countries as well as on the support to the International Think Tank. The luncheon event will also feature the procedural explanation of the Multilateral agreement on the establishment of an International Think Tank, which has to be ratified by at least 10 Landlocked Developing Countries to make the International Think Tank for Landlocked Developing Countries an Intergovernmental Organization.