ADB should expand private sector operations: Garg

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ADB should expand private sector operations: Garg

Sunday, 05 May 2019 | PTI | Nadi

Asserting that Asia continues to be the growth engine of the world, Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash  Chandra Garg on Saturday said the ADB must expand its private sector  operations to boost economic development.

Addressing the Board of Governors of the Asian Development Bank  (ADB) here, he said there is a rising need for the agency to focus  on strengthening human capital and develop social safety nets.

 “Therefore, we urge the ADB management to expand it social sector  engagements in countries like India, while at the same time, continuing  with the focus on making cities smart, providing 24x7 water and power  supply, enhancing connectivity, and mitigating the risk of climate  change. Our regional cooperation

initiatives must aim to integrate  the countries of the region with the global value chains,” he said.

“While ADB should continue helping the member countries harness  their growth potential by providing larger financial resources, it  must expand its private sector operations across the region. By investing  more through equity and infrastructure trusts, ADB can play a meaningful  role in development of private sector initiatives,” Garg, India’s  Alternate Governor on ADB’s Board of Governors, said.

 ADB’s private sector operations reached USD 3.14 billion in 2018,  a 37 per cent increase from the previous fiscal, and stood at 14.5  per cent of its overall commitment.

 Emphasising that ADB has helped the developing countries in building  infrastructure and reducing extreme poverty for the past 52 years,  Garg said innovation in financing will be the key to success of long-term growth strategy.

 “This will require careful fine-tuning of both public and private  sector financing. Private financing has to be carefully shepherded  to the right sectors like manufacturing, services and new digital  economy industries with active support of equity financing from ADB  and other multilateral agencies,” he said.

 Private investment in more difficult sectors like infrastructure  and human capital improvement, however, will not flow unless these  projects are sufficiently de-risked for the private sector with both  direct investment as well as provision of guarantees and other structured  support, he said.

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