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Asia-Pacific Countries with Special Needs Development Report 2017

Investing in Infrastructure for an Inclusive and Sustainable Future

image of Asia-Pacific Countries with Special Needs Development Report 2017

The Asia-Pacific countries with special needs development report 2017 introduces the access to physical infrastructure index as a tool to capture the multidimensional character of infrastructure and to illustrate the strong positive causality between infrastructure and sustainable development. The report highlights that significant infrastructure gaps exist among the countries with special needs, and estimates that these countries need to invest an average of 10.5 per cent of GDP per annum in infrastructure development and maintenance to close the infrastructure deficit, taking population growth, increasing urbanization and the impact of climate change into account. Such investment far exceeds current levels of infrastructure funding. Given the limited resource availability in countries with special needs, the report emphasizes that clear priorities are required for infrastructure development and that sequencing infrastructure investment is necessary by determining where the impact of additional infrastructure on sustainable development outcomes may be the largest.

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Foreword

Thirty-six economies in the Asia-Pacific region are least developed countries, landlocked developing countries or small island developing States. Collectively referred to as “countries with special needs” (CSN), these are the most vulnerable countries in the region. For example, lack of direct territorial access to the sea translates into remoteness and isolation from world markets for landlocked developing countries. Geographic isolation and lack of economies of scale poses a particular development challenge to small island developing States, where climate change threatens their existence. Among the plethora of development challenges of least developed countries, the lack of productive capacities stands out. Addressing such development challenges is critical for these countries’ future and for their effective pursuit of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development.

English

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