Headline : To achieve development goals, Asia-Pacific countries need to spend USD 1.5 tn/yr, says UN report
- UNESCAP’s report ‘ambitions beyond growth’ has projected $1.5trillion as the additional annual cost of meeting the targets set in SDG by 2030 for the countries in the Asia Pacific region.
In focus: UNESCAP’s ‘Ambition beyond Growth’ Report
- The UNESCAP has released a report called ‘ambitions beyond growth’ as a precursor to ‘SDG Progress Report’ to be released in the near future.
- The report is summarized in the following framework
- Progress achieved by Asia Pacific countries in meeting SDGs
- Policy prescriptions
- Region-wise investment priorities in the Asia Pacific
- Prediction of additional investments required to meet SDGs by 2030.
SDG progress of Asia Pacific
- The progress achieved so far on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals is mixed in Asia Pacific region.
- Progress is made but not enough to meet targets on
- SDG 1 (poverty eradication)
- SDG 3 (health)
- SDG 4 (quality education)
- SDG 7 (reliable and clean energy).
- Asia Pacific has regressed in goals such as
- SDG 6 (water and sanitation)
- SDG 8 (decent work)
- SDG 12 (sustainable consumption and production).
- High Poverty and Hunger in South and South East Asia
- 400 million people living in extreme income poverty
- 931 million people in conditions of multidimensional poverty
- 486 million people remain undernourished
- Income Inequality
- Income inequality has increased with the top 10% people accounting for more than half of income.
- Reach of social protection benefits is low among extremely vulnerable groups including children, women, old aged and poor.
- Climate Change
- GHG emissions have increased 6 fold, from 0.9 to 5.8 metric tons per capita.
- 5 of the world’s 10 economies most affected by climate change in the past 10 years in Asia Pacific (Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Viet Nam)
- Job Losses
- Weaker demand in Europe and United States and trade war between US and China has increased tariffs and a loss of at least 2.7 million jobs.
- Low social sector spending
- Low social sector spending as a result of distressed bank assets, high corporate debt and household debt.
- Late entrant in Manufacturing
- Countries shifting from an agriculture-based economy to services-based one bypassing the manufacturing sector may reduce the scope for industrialization.
Investment to achieve SDG by 2030
- Additional annual investment of $1.5 trillion which is equal to $1 per person per day.
- This is 5% of the combined GDP of Asia-Pacific developing countries in 2018.
- Least developed countries and South and South-West Asia
- Should scale up investments to end poverty and hunger and reach health and education targets
- East and North-East Asia
- Step up on clean energy and climate action.
- Pacific island developing States
- Additional investments in disaster-resilient infrastructure
Policy Interventions to achieve SDG by 2030
- Efficient public spending
- Proactive fiscal policy to support near- and long-term development needs beyond just economic growth.
- Leveraging private sector
- Innovative financial instruments such as green bonds
- Strengthened multilateral financing mechanisms
- $669 billion to support basic human rights and develop human capacities
- $590 billion to achieve clean energy for all and live in harmony with nature
- $196 billion for improved access to transport, information and communications technology (ICT), and water and sanitation
Structural transformation towards sustainable development
- Invest in people and enabling infrastructure.
- Focus on agricultural productivity and rural industries
- Resource-efficient systems of production and consumption to reduce carbon emissions
- Targeted cash transfers to eliminate poverty
- Social protection floor for vulnerable groups including child, maternity, unemployment, disability and old-age
- Nutrition-specific interventions to address wasting, breastfeeding, anaemia and stunting
Health and Education
- Additional investment of $158 billion to scale up health systems.
- Additional investment of $138 billion per year would be needed for providing universal pre-primary to upper-secondary schooling of a certain quality.
Clean Energy and Energy security
- Additional cost for
- Shifting from fossil fuel to renewable energy
- Enhancing energy efficiency in the transport, building and industry sectors
- Achieving universal access to electricity and clean cooking.
- North-South, South-South and triangular cooperation to accelerate the pace of sustainable development