Chair’s Summary of the Special Ministerial Meeting Millennium Development Goals Review in Asia and the Pacific “Run Up to 2015” Jakarta, 3-4 August 2010

 8/4/2010

 

1.  On 3-4 August 2010, the Government of the Republic of Indonesia held a “Special Ministerial Meeting for the Millennium Development Goals Review in Asia and the Pacific: Run Up to 2015” (SMM). The SMM consisted of Ministerial Plenary Sessions and three Roundtable Sessions and produced a Jakarta Declaration.  In the sidelines of the SMM, a Civil Society Organization Consultation for the region was held on 1-2 August 2010 as well as a side event on 3 August 2010 entitled “Private Sector Participation on MDGs Achievement Efforts in Indonesia”.

 

2.  In his welcoming remarks, H.E. Dr. R. M. Marty M. Natalegawa, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Indonesia, underscored the importance of the convening of the SMM as part of the regional effort to ensure that our national commitments and international cooperation to bring about the eradication of poverty, fulfilment of educational rights, development in health, and protection of the environment.

 

3.  On behalf of the Secretary General of the United Nations, H.E. Mr. Sha Zukang, the Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, highlights that despite the recent food, energy and economic and financial crises, the developing world remains on track to halve extreme poverty from its 1990 level. Furthermore, a number of countries have registered major successes, however the performance have been uneven across the goals and from country to country. The UN will continue to be the partner of Asia Pacific’s countries for development.

4.  In his inaugural speech, H.E. Prof. Dr. Boediono, Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia, highlighted several MDGs targets in the region, amongst others, extreme poverty, severe child hunger, primary school enrolment, gender imparity, infant and child mortality, and HIV/AIDS remain high in the region. To sustain economic growth and attain the MDGs, trade and investment must be promoted in the region. The Asia Pacific can contribute significantly to inclusive and sustainable global growth.  The Vice President also elaborated the national plans for short, medium and long term in meeting the MDGs by 2015.

5.  During the Ministerial Plenary Interactive Discussion, chaired by H.E. Prof. Dr. Nila Moeloek, Special Envoy of the President of the Republic of Indonesia for MDGs, 18 Ministers and Vice Ministers and Secretary General of UNCTAD had been participated in the discussion. Some key issues emerged were as follows:

·          The majority of countries in the region reported that the progress in attaining the MDGs has been uneven and there was a need to intensify collective efforts.

·          The situation of women and children is still gravely lacking in the region and more effort must be promoted.

·          Technical assistance and capacity building must be promoted, especially in the field of agriculture, infrastructure development and renewable energies.

·          Human resources development is central to development efforts in the region.

·          It is important to set up monitoring body for development aid.

6.  The first Roundtable Discussion was chaired by H.E. Mr. Triyono Wibowo, the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Indonesia. The Session discussed challenges and opportunities of Asia and the Pacific Countries, especially emerging economies and countries with special needs, in achieving the MDGs by 2015. The resource persons of the Session were Mr. Tangavel Palanivel (UNDP), Dr. Nagesh Kumar (UNESCAP), and Ms. Farah Kabir (Action Aid Bangladesh) and lead discussants from Australia and Japan. Key ideas that were emerged were:

·       The region had impressive progress on MDGs, however disparities still persisted. 

·       The need to develop a more inclusive development to achieve MDGs, while intra-trade and investment are recommended.

·       The importance to boost domestic resource mobilization.

·       The resources needed to finance MDGs could be taken from domestic resources through fiscal space, reorientation of budget and innovative taxes, as well as from international resources by increasing the ODA and South-South economic assistance.

7.  The second Roundtable Discussion was chaired by H.E. Prof. Dr. Armida Alisjahbana, Minister for National Development Planning/Head of BAPPENAS of Indonesia. The Session discussed MDGs financing in the context of regional and global engagement. The resource persons of the Session were Mr. Rajat M. Nag (ADB), Ms. Priya Basu (World Bank), and Mr. Elmar Vinh Thomas (The Global Fund) and lead discussants from China, Papua New Guinea, and the United Kingdom. The key issues that were highlighted during the session:

·      There are various challenges that are faced by Asia Pacific region, especially a reduction in ODA levels which will severely impact the Low Income Countries and the poor.

·      The region must quickly promote the mobilisation of resources, including through innovative mechanism, reallocating public sector spending, fostering greater private sector participation through Public Private Partnerships and Corporate Social Responsibility and increasing awareness that the attainment of MDGs is responsibility of all and Doha Development Agenda should be finalized.

·      The World Bank has developed some approaches to innovative financing, namely (1) innovative financing should be based on contextual approach to solve specific development challenges, (2) innovative financing should involves the combination of available financial instruments into a new package, or using them in a new context or setting, (3) the driving force behind a new financial mechanism is either to generate additional funds, to make funds more efficient, or to link funds to results.

·      For regional level, traditional donors and international organizations are expected to take the lead. In this connection, ADB is expected to expand its services which will focus on infrastructure building in health, water, sanitation, and education.

·      Flexibilities of the lending and debt swap for MDGs should be thoroughly considered.

8.  At the Working Luncheon, Ministers were briefed by the UNDP, UNESCAP and ADB on the new Joint Report “Achieving the MDGs in an era of global uncertainty: Asia Pacific Regional Report”. The Report elaborated seven key drivers for accelerating progress towards MDGs, namely re-balancing Asia Pacific economies in favour of greater domestic consumption, making economic growth more inclusive and sustainable, strengthening social protection, reducing persistent gender gaps, ensuring financial inclusion, boosting international economic assistance, and exploiting the potential of South-South and regional cooperation. The Luncheon also raised the issues of green growth, Public Private Partnership and the need to build basic infrastructure to accelerate development in the region.

9.  The third Roundtable Discussion was chaired by H.E. Mr. Dr. Dipu Moni, MP, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh. The Session discussed how to promote an inclusive and sustainable development for advancing the MDGs and beyond. The resource persons of the Session were H.E. Mr. Sha Zukang (UN) and Mr. Christopher Delgado (World Bank) and lead discussants from Afghanistan, People’s Republic of China, and the Unites States of America.  The key issues that were raised during the session:

·      The attainment of MDGs by 2015 is not end in itself. There should be long-term strategies with a view to achieve an inclusive, strong, balanced and sustainable economic growth and development.

·      There is a mixed outlook on the global landscape whereas many emerging markets and developing countries are recovering from the crisis but global output has not recovered to pre-crisis levels and export volumes remain will below trend.

·      There are several development challenges ahead, among others, redoubling efforts to attain the MDGs, fostering multi-polar growth, managing risk and anticipating future crisis.

·      Human resource development plays a pivotal role in fostering long-term sustainable economic growth and development. Therefore, special attention should be put on fostering quality health services, including maternal and child health as well as quality education.

·      Due to the scarcity of funding support, developed countries are called upon to provide assistance (ODA) to developing countries in achieving the MDGs, including through market access.

10.  The SMM adopted a Declaration that showcases the success, commitment, and future strategies of the region towards cooperation and development in attaining the MDGs.