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Development banks pledge $175 million investment in sustainable transport

Posted by on Jul 20, 2012 in Accessibility, All news, Asia, Bus, Employment, Funding, Latin America and Caribbean, Middle East and north Africa, Oceania, PPP, Services, Sub-Saharan Africa, Systems, Uncategorized |

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon’s address at the Rio +20 Summit

Eight multilateral development banks (MDBs) announced at the Rio+20 summit  that they would set earmark $175 billion to finance sustainable transport systems over the next decade.

The pledge was made jointly by the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, African Development Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, CAF-Development Bank of Latin America, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, European Investment Bank and Islamic Development Bank.

“Rapid motorization is creating more congestion, air pollution, traffic accidents and greenhouse gas emissions – especially in developing countries,” said Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Haruhiko Kuroda, speaking on behalf of the MDBs at a news conference in Rio de Janeiro. “Developing countries have the opportunity to leapfrog to a greener future of less motorization, shorter commutes, and more energy efficient transport systems.”

The ADB pointed out that “sustainable transport solutions are available”, adding that the institution “is already supporting green transportation solutions across Asia, including low-cost electric vehicles in the Philippines, urban metrorail systems in Viet Nam, bus rapid transit systems in Mongolia and Bangladesh, and inland waterway transport in the People’s Republic of China”

Investment on the scale planned could indeed bring big improvements, but capital is only one of the vital inputs in public transport. There must also be investments in workforce development — not only in creating jobs but in making sure they are good jobs that enable those who have them to provide good services.

In addition, where improved services such as BRT systems squeeze informal transport providers out of the market there needs to be better planning to enable the displaced workers to secure alternative livelihoods.

We will be keeping en eye on those aspects of public transport investments in particular, and researching and promoting good practice.


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