S. Korea readies for upcoming ADB annual meeting, chairs online pre-session

By Bae Hyunjung

Published : May 22, 2020 - 15:37
Updated : May 22, 2020 - 15:37

(Yonhap)


Preparing for the Asian Development Bank’s annual meeting to be held in Songdo in September, South Korea’s government on Friday chaired a pre-session to handle key agendas in advance.

During the 30-minute teleconference, presided by Korean Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki, the board of directors approved the ADB’s annual financial report and reiterated joint efforts for regional prosperity according to the Ministry of Economy and Finance.

Earlier in March, responding to the escalating fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ADB decided to postpone its annual meeting from the originally scheduled May 2-5 to Sept. 18-21.

The latest teleconference was held as a separate pre-session to the main event in September, in order to handle priority financial agendas within due timeline, officials said.

During the meeting, ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa summed up the organization’s contribution to COVID-19 solutions, including its move to triple the financial aid package to $20 billion from the previous $6.5 billion.

He also reiterated his pledges to expand the ADB’s mid and long-term vision to achieve a prosperous, inclusive, and sustainable Asia-Pacific region by year 2030.

Speaking for South Korea -- not only the chair country for this year’s annual meeting but also a leading player in terms of anti-coronavirus quarantine -- Hong underlined the ADB’s role in helping emerging economies cope with the pandemic crisis.

While sharing heath care policy experience and reinforcing social networks, the regional network should also exert joint efforts to innovate digital platforms and contactless businesses in order to cope with the post-coronavirus way of life and the change of global value chain, according to Seoul’s fiscal chief.

By Bae Hyun-jung (tellme@heraldcorp.com)

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