41st Session of the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA) Standing Committee, 3-4 June 2013, Bangkok
ESCAP, as the Secretariat to the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement, is organizing the Forty-first (41st) session of the APTA Standing Committee from 3-4 June 2013 at the United Nations Conference Centre (UNCC) in Bangkok. Representatives and negotiation experts from the focal point ministries of the Participating States (Bangladesh, China, India, Lao PDR, Republic of Korea, and Sri Lanka) of the APTA and Mongolia all have confirmed to participate in this Standing Committee session. The Committee will explore widening and deepening areas of South-South trade cooperation and regional integration, including: Conclusion of the Fourth Round Negotiations on Tariff Concessions; Product-Specific Rule and De Minimis Rule under the APTA Rules of Origin; Ratification of Framework Agreements on Trade Facilitation, Investment and Services – The Way Forward; and Discussions on the “Future Road Map of APTA”. Bilateral meetings are also facilitated between the current member States of the APTA and Mongolia to finalize Mongolia's accession to the Agreement by the fourth session of the APTA Ministerial Council, which is expected to be convened in the last quarter of 2013 in Dhaka, Bangladesh, subject to the Standing Committee's final decision at its 41st session. The APTA is a unique regional trade agreement whose membership is open to all developing member States of ESCAP.
|First Intermediate-level e-Learning Course on 2008 System of National Accounts: Integrated Transaction Accounts, 3 June to 9 August 2013 |
The Statistical Institute for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP-SIAP), in collaboration with the Tokushima University, is going to conduct a ten-weeks’ distance learning course on the 2008 SNA using the Internet: First Intermediate-level e-Learning Course on System of National Accounts, during 3 June to 9 August 2013. This is a guided distance learning course, conducted utilizing the distance training system developed by Tokushima University, a national university in Japan.
The present course is designed for junior- and middle-level officials with prior knowledge of the basic concepts of the SNA. With the general goal of strengthening the capacity of national statistical offices in compilation of national accounts (according to the 2008 SNA), the Intermediate-Level e-Learning Course on the System of National Accounts is designed to provide, in particular, a detailed description and underlying principles of the structure and content of the integrated sequence of transaction accounts of the SNA, in terms of nominal and real measures of the constituent macro-economic aggregates. The course is designed to help the participants acquire knowledge and skills to better understand the principles of compiling sequence of accounts at current and constant prices; and identify the data needs for compiling the sequence of transaction accounts.
|ESCAP and the Paramadina Graduate School convene a National Consultation on Strengthening Social Protection, 4 June 2013, Jakarta
On 4 June 2013, experts on social protection from the Government, academia, civil society and relevant international organizations will meet in Jakarta at the National Consultation on Strengthening Social Protection in Indonesia. The Consultation, organized by ESCAP in cooperation with the Paramadina Graduate School (PGS), will review preliminary research findings on how to build upon existing interventions to achieve universal social protection coverage in Indonesia. This is the first in a series of six National Consultations in Asia-Pacific that will be held within the framework of an inter-regional project on strengthening social protection. The National Consultations in Thailand, Viet Nam and China will also take place in June. The research results will be integrated into a practical, policy-oriented interregional online toolbox and will provide support to national level initiatives, promote the exchange of experiences, formulate capacity-building activities and document innovative schemes with the objective of achieving fairer and more effective universal social protection schemes.
APCICT supports ICT capacity building throughout the Asia-Pacific region with events for government officials and youth, June
On 5 June, APCICT will collaborate with the Office of the Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Open Society Institute (OSI) to organize the e-Leadership International Conference in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Intended to raise awareness and secure the commitment of high-level government officials on using ICTs for governance and development, the event will be attended by over 100 participants, including the Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan, ministers, parliamentarians, and representatives of civil society, business, academe, and development agencies. The Conference will be followed by a national Training of Trainers (TOT) Workshop on 7 to 8 June in Bishkek, covering the use of ICT in disaster risk management, climate change, and green growth. Co-organized by APCICT and UNDP, the workshop will be attended by over 100 government officials and NGO leaders.
From 12 to 14 June in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, as per an invitation from the National Academy of Science under President of the Republic of Turkmenistan, APCICT will make two presentations during the International Exhibition and Scientific Conference, while celebrating the localization of its Academy programme for government leaders into Turkmen language. In the same week, APCICT will also bring the Academy to 10 training institutions in Nepal in partnership with the Ministry of General Administration, which is launching a training curriculum to enhance the ICT capacity of government officials.
From 24-28 June, APCICT will move on to Manila, Philippines for an ASEAN sub-regional workshop during the country’s National ICT Month. Through partnership with the National Computer Institute (NCI) under the Information and Communications Technology Office (ICTO), around 200 participants composed of secondary and tertiary education students and university faculty representatives will gather for a technical talk on the first day. Following this, a four-day workshop on the ‘Primer Series for ICTD for Youth’, APCICT’s ICTD capacity building programme for university students, will be held for 50 university faculty from the Philippines and other ASEAN countries.
|Ninth ADB-ESCAP Annual Consultation Meeting, 5-6 June 2013, Manila
ESCAP will hold the ninth annual consultation meeting with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) at ADB’s headquarters in Manila, on 5 to 6 June 2013. The meeting will review the ongoing cooperation between the two agencies in the following six thematic areas:
MDGs, statistics, water, environment and climate change, social protection and regional connectivity.
Building on mutual synergies and strengths, ADB and ESCAP will also discuss ways forward in the partnership and explore new areas of collaboration, such as disaster risk reduction and regional ICT connectivity.
|Workshop on “Lao PDR towards the AEC”, Huaphan Provinces, Lao PDR, 6 June 2013
Jointly organised by ESCAP and Thailand's International Institute for Trade and Development (ITD) and Department of Trade Negotiations (DTN), the workshop will focus on the challenges facing Lao PDR as it integrates into the regional and global economy.
Sessions will cover: (i) the world trading system, (ii) the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), (iii) self-certification for trade, and (iv) the place of Lao PDR in the global economy. Participants will include officials and policy-makers from relevant ministries.
|ESCAP Regional Forum and Meeting of Chief Executives of National Associations of Freight Forwarders, Multimodal Transport Operators and Logistics Service Providers are held in Negombo, Sri Lanka, 6-7 June 2013, and Workshop on Regulatory Frameworks for Logistics Service Providers, 7 June 2013, Negombo, Sri Lanka
ESCAP Regional Forum and Meeting of Chief Executives of National Associations of Freight Forwarders, Multimodal Transport Operators and Logistics Service Providers will be held in Negombo, Sri Lanka, 6-7 June 2013. The annual meetings are held this year for the 7th time in conjunction with the FIATA Region Asia-Pacific (RAP) Field Meeting, and provide an enabling platform for the industry in Asia and the Pacific to share knowledge and experience, discuss emerging issues and promote the development of their services. The meetings are followed by a Workshop on Regulatory Frameworks for Logistics Service Providers, where participants will have the opportunity to discuss major findings of the ESCAP regional study on regulatory frameworks for logistics service providers. The Workshop will also comment on the recommendations of the study, including establishment of minimum standards for logistics service providers and other means of developing and enhancing professional conduct in the industry in Asia and the Pacific.
Capacity-building for the development and operation of Dry Ports of International Importance - Seminar for countries of North and Central Asia and East and North Asia, Busan, Republic of Korea, 11-12 June 2013
Phase II (2012-2016) of the Regional Action Programme (RAP) for Transport Development in Asia and the Pacific adopted by the Ministerial Conference on Transport held in Bangkok in March 2012, mandates the ESCAP secretariat to promote regional and interregional connectivity and cooperation through the further development of the Asian Highway and Trans-Asian Railway networks as well as dry ports. The activities under the RAP aim at bringing about the realization of an international integrated intermodal transport and logistics system for the region. ESCAP together with its member countries and development partners recognizes the role of intermodal interfaces, including dry ports, in integrating the Asian Highway and Trans-Asian Railway networks into a comprehensive transport system that provides efficient access to goods and services in support of economic and social development while, at the same time, minimizing the negative impacts of a rapidly growing transport sector.
With the above in mind, ESCAP, in collaboration with the International Union of Railways (http://www.uic.org/ ), is organizing the Capacity-building for the development and operation of Dry Ports of International Importance - Seminar for countries of North and Central Asia and East and North Asia in Busan, Republic of Korea, on 11 and 12 June 2013. The seminar will take place at the Busan Exhibition and Conference Centre (http://www.bexco.co.kr/english/main/main.jsp) in conjunction with the Railway and Logistics Fair organized by Busan Metropolitan City from 12 to 15 June 2013 (http://www.raillogkorea.com/). The seminar, which follows the adoption of the Intergovernmental Agreement on Dry Ports by the ESCAP Commission at its 69th session, is intended as a networking event between government officials and experts from international institutions involved in the planning, design, development and operation of Dry Ports.
|Workshop on translating research findings into knowledge products for farmers, 11-14 June 2013, Bogor, Indonesia
This capacity-building event aims to reduce the knowledge gap between research and practice by enhancing the capacity of Indonesian extension workers to identify the most compelling findings from the work of researchers, and package, present and disseminate these findings to farmers in a practical form. It will offer an opportunity to deepen participants’ understanding of knowledge issues and gaps between research and extension, enhance their communication skills, share best practices, learn to write targeted knowledge products and better engage with both researchers and farmers. The event is being organized through partnership between CAPSA and the Indonesian Center for Agricultural Technology Assessment and Development (ICATAD).
Presentation and discussion forum on market participation of smallholder farm families in PNG, 17 June 2013, Papua New Guinea
Dr. Upali Wickramasinghe, Regional Adviser on Poverty Reduction and Food Security, ESCAP/CAPSA will make a presentation and conduct a discussion forum on “Market participation of smallholder farm families in Papua New Guinea" at the National Research Institute (NRI), Boroko, National Capital District, Papua New Guinea.
Researchers and officials of the National Research Institute and the Department of Agriculture and Livestock are expected to attend the presentation and discussion.
|East and North-East Asia countries explore opportunities for cooperation among development partners in support of Post 2015 development agenda, 20 June 2013, Beijing
ESCAP Subregional Office for East and North-East Asia (SRO-ENEA) is organizing a seminar on East and North-East Asia Development Cooperation in Post 2015 in cooperation with the China Agricultural University and China International Development Network. The Seminar aims to bring together around 40 stakeholders and experts on development cooperation to discuss the challenges and opportunities for cooperation among development partners and recommendations on measures that will encourage ENEA stakeholders to work together towards contributing to the post 2015 development agenda.
|Fifth Workshop on Forging Partnerships in Statistical Training in Asia and the Pacific: Making e-Learning Work for Us, 24-26 June 2013, Chiba, Japan
The Statistical Institute for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP-SIAP) will conduct the Fifth Workshop on Forging Partnerships in Statistical Training in Asia and the Pacific: Making e-Learning Work for Us, during 24-26 June 2013. The workshop is designed for the heads of training institutes/ units and representatives of statistical training institutes of the countries having e-learning programme on official statistics and countries that have potential to get involved.
With the general goal of strengthening the capacity of national statistical offices, the workshop aims to develop a road map for expanding and accelerating use of Internet-based e-learning for statistical training through forging of partnership among official statistics training providers, including: an assessment of the current status use of the Internet for running e-learning courses on official statistics in the region; strategies to be adopted for specifying the objectives, identifying the scope of training topics and motivating the participants in order to maximize impact; and, an implementation strategy for adapting the massive open online course (MOOC) model.
|SATNET regional workshop on climate resilient smallholder agricultural farming systems in South Asia, 24-27 June 2013, New Delhi, India
The workshop will review the latest global and regional developments in the area of climate change adaptation as well as contribute to strengthening the capacity of key stakeholders for promoting climate resilient farming systems for the benefit of smallholder farmers. It will comprise of two parts, namely a regional consultation with a focus on climate change adaptation linked with Disaster Risk Reduction and improved resilience for communities, followed by a training to enhance the knowledge amongst value chain actors for dissemination, adaptation and adoption of climate friendly farming practices. The event is being organized by CAPSA and the Asian and Pacific Centre for Transfer of Technology, New Delhi (APCTT) in partnership with the United Nations Disaster Management Team in India.
|Ninth ARTNeT Capacity Building Workshop for Trade Research and Analysis, 24-28 June 2013, Bangkok
Bringing together researchers and policy-makers from across the region, this year’s Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ARTNeT) workshop will focus on developing research skills and tools for effective trade analysis. Arranged in collaboration with the WTO and Thailand's International Institute for Trade and Development (ITD), the workshop will cover essential approaches to trade analysis including analyzing trade flows and quantifying trade policy. Core trade models such as the gravity model will be introduced and analytical software packages will be presented through hands on training sessions. In addition, participants will be invited to discuss their individual research projects and will get feedback on how they can be strengthened to incorporate the new techniques and approaches that the course will impart.
|Policy Dialogue on Strengthening Transport Connectivity among South and South-West Asian Countries, 26-27 June 2013, Dhaka
Regional economic integration is being promoted across the world as a new driver of growth, especially in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. With poor operational connectivity in surface transport, South and South-West Asia remains one of the least integrated subregions in Asia. Cumbersome border clearance procedures and inefficient arrangements for cross-border and transit transport are critical non-physical barriers for subregional connectivity. As a result, intraregional trade is not able to capitalize on the countries’ geographical proximity. Bearing this in mind, and in view of the importance of cross-border and transit transport for boosting intraregional trade, the Transport Division and the ESCAP-SSWA Office, in cooperation with the Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) are organizing the above-cited Policy Dialogue in Dhaka, Bangladesh on 26 and 27 June 2013. The main objective of the Policy Dialogue is to provide an opportunity for the participating countries to share experience on the current status and measures in enhancing transport connectivity; explore ways to apply various transport facilitation tools developed by the secretariat, to help deepen transport connectivity; and discuss and agree on concrete and actionable measures required to strengthen transport connectivity.
Special Observances and Meetings
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