ADB gets $11.3 bn to fight povertyMay 3rd, 2008 - 2:44 pm ICT by admin
Manila, May 3 (DPA) The Asian Development Bank (ADB) said Saturday it had secured $11.3 billion in concessional funds to fight poverty in Asia and the Pacific for the next four years. The contributions to the Asian Development Fund (ADF) for 2009-12 are 60 percent higher than in the previous period, the Manila-based ADB said in a statement.
The last replenishment of the ADB, which covered 2005 to 2008, totaled $7 billion.
Through the ADF, the ADB provides grants and low-interest loans to the poorest countries in the region, which is home to some 400 million people living on less than $2 a day.
The negotiations for contributions to the 2009-12 ADF concluded at the eve of the annual meeting of the bank’s Board of Governors starting Saturday in Madrid, Spain.
ADB President Haruhiko Kuroda said that the ADF will “help developing Asia-Pacific countries meet Millennium Development Goal targets and bring better opportunities to people in the region’s poorest nations”.
Roads, clean water and sanitation, electricity networks and other essential infrastructure that improve the lives of the impoverished and accelerate growth are the cornerstone of ADF support.
The bank said that the fund will provide support to further enhance Asia-Pacific regional cooperation and integration.
The fund will also continue to support the agriculture sector through the funding of irrigation systems, rural roads and rural finance mechanisms.
“With child malnutrition still widespread in Asia and the global food crisis threatening to reverse the gains nations have achieved in reducing poverty, support for rural infrastructure and rural finance is critically important,” Kuroda said.
A significant portion of ADF resources are also expected to pay for education initiatives. It will also provide support for climate-change mitigation and other environmental measures, the ADB said.
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