03
November
2019

ASEAN and World Bank Cooperation on Connectivity: Initiative Rolling Pipeline of Potential ASEAN Infrastructure Projects

03
November
2019

ASEAN and World Bank Cooperation on Connectivity: Initiative Rolling Pipeline of Potential ASEAN Infrastructure Projects

174

ASEAN and World Bank Cooperation on Connectivity: Initiative
Rolling Pipeline of Potential ASEAN Infrastructure Projects

On 2 November 2019, Thailand chaired the 24th ASEAN Coordinating Council (ACC) meeting at the 35th ASEAN Summit and Related Summits.  It was attended by Foreign Ministers of ASEAN Member States and the Secretary-General of ASEAN. Mr. Ranjit Lamech, Regional Director for Infrastructure (East Asia and Pacific) of the World Bank, and Senator the Honourable Simon Birmingham, Minister for Trade, Tourism, and Investment of Australia, were also invited.

At the Meeting, Mr. Ranjit Lamech gave a presentation on the World Bank’s research paper on “Connecting the Connectivities: ASEAN and the Regions.” ASEAN requested the World Bank to conduct the said research to further promote regional connectivity. The paper gives an overview analysis of ASEAN’s connectivity strategy in line with other connectivity strategies in the Asia-Pacific region, such as China’s Belt and Road Initiative, Japan’s Quality Infrastructure, and the United States of America’s BUILD ACT.

In addition, the Secretary-General of ASEAN announced the list of Initial Rolling Priority Pipeline of Potential ASEAN Infrastructure Projects. This list of projects is the first key initiative in the ASEAN Connectivity Strategy under the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025 (MPAC 2025) to assist ASEAN member states in selecting bankable infrastructure projects that have the highest potential, to attract investment from Dialogue Partners and financial institutions.

As a result, the World Bank has currently selected a list of 19 projects in the initial pipeline, which can be modified as appropriate. The projects cover strategic areas such as transportation, energy, and information and communications technology (ICT).  Three projects in Thailand, namely, the ASEAN Digital Hub, the Hadyai – Sadao Motorway, and the Bangkok- Nong Khai high-speed railway, have been included in the list.

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ASEAN and World Bank Cooperation on Connectivity: Initiative Rolling Pipeline of Potential ASEAN Infrastructure Projects