International Efforts on Development Cooperation

UN General Assembly High-Level Side Event: “Promoting Quality Infrastructure”
(Co-hosted by Japan, the European Commission and the United Nations)

September 26, 2018
Japanese

  • UN General Assembly High-Level Side Event: “Promoting Quality Infrastructure
  • UN General Assembly High-Level Side Event: “Promoting Quality Infrastructure
  • UN General Assembly High-Level Side Event: “Promoting Quality Infrastructure
On 26 September at the United Nations in New York, Japan, the European Commission and the United Nations co-hosted a High-Level Side Event on “Promoting Quality Infrastructure”. The summary of the meeting is as follows.
  1. In the opening session, the co-hosts, H.E. Mr. Taro Kono, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, H.E. Mr. Neven Mimica, European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development and H.E. Ms. Grete Faremo, Executive Director of UNOPS (United Nations Office for Project Services) made keynote speeches.
  2. (1) Minister Kono, in his keynote speech, stated that Japan promotes the “Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy”, in cooperation with various partners, including the US. Minister Kono also stated that, looking ahead to our G20 presidency next year, Japan will continue efforts to consolidate the quality infrastructure concept as an international standard shared by the international community and enhance connectivity through quality infrastructure.

    (2) Commissioner Mimica stated that quality infrastructure is more than just a technically sound project, but ensuring economically, socially and environmentally sustainable approach. Commissioner Mimica also stated that last year the EU launched the External Investment Plan, which aims to bridge the gap between sustainable development needs, and viable business opportunities for public and private investors.

    (3) Executive Director Faremo, referring to their efforts in Ghana and Kenya, stated that the UNOPS aims at making projects bankable, and plays important role to help unleash funding of governments and the private sector.

  3. The following panelists participated in the ensuing panel discussion: Mr. Kentaro Sonoura, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister of Japan; Mr. Nicholas O’Regan, Director, Infrastructure and Project Management Group, UNOPS; Dr. Diani Sadiawati, Expert Staff to the Ministry for Institutional Relations, Indonesia National Development Planning Ministry; Ms. Rosemary G. Edillon, Undersecretary, National Economic and Development Authority of the Philippines; Mr. James Richardson, Assistant to the Administrator, USAID; Mr. Gerd Schwartz, Deputy Director, Immediate Office, Fiscal Affairs Department, IMF ; Mr. Mario Pezzini, Director, OECD Development Centre, Special Advisor to the OECD Secretary-General on Development; Mr. Daniel F. Runde, Senior Vice President, Director for Project on Prosperity and Development, Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS); Mr. Stefano Manservisi, Director General for International Cooperation and Development of the European Commission (moderator).
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    • Special Advisor to the Prime Minister Sonoura’s presentation(English(PDF)Open a New Window)

    (1) Mr. Sonoura, in his presentation, raised the issue of “lender’s responsibility” and reiterated the importance of quality infrastructure in accordance with international standards including open access, transparency, effective resource mobilization and debt sustainability, describing specific examples of quality infrastructure such as the Japan Mekong Connectivity Initiative Project and JICA’s Private Sector Investment (PSI) Finance in the Philippines.

    (2) Other panelists explained their respective efforts on effective resource mobilization and debt sustainability.

    (3) The moderator summarized as follows: (a) it is important not only to develop international standards on quality infrastructure, but also to implement the standards; (b) quality infrastructure is not only for developing countries, but for the growth of global economy, (c) mobilization of private resources involves not only the private sector, but also government policy; and (d) Japan, as the next G20 presidency, is expected to lead the discussion on quality infrastructure.

  4. A wide range of participants in the field of infrastructure investments, including those from both developed and developing countries, international organizations and think-tanks, shared their efforts on quality infrastructure with particular focus on effective resource mobilization and debt sustainability, and came to an understanding on the importance of international standard of quality infrastructure, including these elements.

(Handout)