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Delivered by Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana

07 December 2022

ESCAP ES

Dr. Olimjon Alijonovich Tuychiev, Director-General of the Ministry of Innovative Development of Uzbekistan,

Mr. Surinder Pal Singh, Joint Secretary of the Ministry of Science and Technology of India,

Representatives of member States of the Governing Council of APCTT,

Distinguished participants, colleagues, ladies and gentlemen,

It is indeed my pleasure to extend a warm welcome to the 18th session of the Governing Council of the Asian and Pacific Centre for Transfer of Technology of ESCAP (APCTT).

I would like to express my sincerest appreciation as well as gratitude to the Governing Council members, partner countries and stakeholders for their invaluable support and cooperation to this Centre during the past years.

Delivering on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement requires that the Asia-Pacific region works towards catalyzing inclusive and sustainable development by leveraging the potential of science, technology and innovation.

The recently concluded United Nations Climate Change Conference COP27 called for strengthened action to cut greenhouse gas emissions as well as adaptation to climate change, and also to further boost the support of finance, technology and capacity building needed especially by developing countries.

While climate change remains a critical challenge, the COVID-19 pandemic exposed the inherent limitations of countries.

These include severe and sudden disruption of health services, slowing economic growth, and also its impact to jobs,, s incomes,  as well as the trade connectivity, now we see also the risk to food insecurity, energy among others.

The pandemic also highlighted the widespread inequalities between and within countries in terms of widened gaps in access to healthcare and other social services, financial resources, and technologies to address these multiple challenges.

Technologies can enable developing countries to leapfrog and transform their economies; however, many countries – especially the LDCs and those in special situations – face constraints in terms of resources and capacity.

There are also constraints like inadequate institutional frameworks and lack of coordination between sectors, stakeholders and institutions.

Countries across the region are introducing policy measures to maximize the benefits of innovative technologies through public and private partnership as well as mechanisms.

While there are success stories, such efforts may not be adequate in meeting the needs of the most vulnerable and marginalized population in the countries.

To meet the challenges, countries will require transformational policy measures to harness innovative technologies at all levels such as innovation, incubation, scale-up, transfer, adoption and diffusion.

We encourage collaborative actions by member States to improve the affordability and accessibility of new and emerging technologies, requiring policies and systems to adopt an inclusive and multistakeholder approach.

We can work with member States to facilitate multistakeholder engagements for promoting technologies for inclusive and sustainable development.

This Governing Council session is to be seen in the context of ESCAP Resolution 78/1, which was endorsed by member States this year at our Commission session in May, it is called Bangkok Declaration on a Common Agenda to Advance Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific.

The resolution calls upon member States “to mobilize financial resources from all sources and promote the provision and the transfer of appropriate forms of environmentally sound technology on voluntary and mutually agreed terms and build capacity and provide support to help countries to achieve low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development in our region.

It recognizes that “The fourth industrial revolution, driven by the impact of digital technology, data processing and the development of artificial intelligence, offers unprecedented opportunities and new challenges and has tremendous potential to accelerate the realization of the 2030 Agenda.”

Distinguished the Governing Council members, ladies and gentlemen,

We are committed to delivering tangible support to member States in strengthening their technology and innovation policies, strategies and capacity for achieving sustainable development.

We support member States through facilitating capacity building, policy advice, knowledge-sharing and cross-border technology cooperation and transfer.

We also look forward to your support and guidance to strengthen the work programme of APCTT according to the Strategic Plan for 2023-2027 and bring it into alignment with the current priorities and needs of countries.

Your recommendations and proposals will be vital inputs for designing a focused and robust programme of work for APCTT in line with the strategic plan.

In closing, I would like to convey our deepest appreciation to member States for their continued and strong backing of the Centre. With your invaluable support, the Centre will deliver tangible results to the region.

Thank you very much.

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