Development banks vow $175 billion for clean transport

RIO DE JANEIRO, June 20 Wed Jun 20, 2012 7:26pm IST

Passengers wait for a train which will take them to their hometown at the Pasar Senen train station in Jakarta August 25, 2011. REUTERS/Supri

Passengers wait for a train which will take them to their hometown at the Pasar Senen train station in Jakarta August 25, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Supri

RIO DE JANEIRO, June 20 (Reuters Point Carbon) - The world's eight largest development banks said on Wednesday they will invest $175 billion over 10 years to support low-emission transportation programs, such as car sharing or rapid bus systems, in Asia, Latin America and Africa, whose cities are bracing for population growth of 1 billion people over next two decades.

The Asian Development Bank, World Bank and six other multilateral banks announced the $175 billion commitment of loans and grant at the U.N. Sustainable Development Conference in Rio de Janeiro (Rio+20), where they called for sustainable transportation to be set as a priority in the U.N.'s development agenda.

The banks said they are making the financial commitment at a critical time for the transportation sector, as cities in Africa and Asia are expected to add hundreds of millions of people to their populations.

The pace of urban growth will require new transportation systems to help these cities prevent patters of urban sprawl and congestion, according to the Partnership on Sustainable Low Carbon Transport (SLoCaT), a partnership including UN-organizations, the development banks and other development organizations.

"The breakthrough that we are witnessing allows us to plan for the one billion people who will move to cities over the next 20 years and the one billion people still living in poverty," says Cornie Huizenga, an organizer SLoCaT's Rio+20 campaign.

In a joint statement released on Wednesday, the development banks said that with more people driving in developing countries as incomes rise, a lack of efficient transportation in some rapidly growing cities has caused major congestion, which has resulted in lost time and higher transport costs that range from 2 to 5 percent of GDP.

The banks also said that if current trends continue, the transportation sector will become the largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world, accounting for 46 percent of global emissions by 2035.

"These unprecedented commitments have the promise to save hundreds of thousands of lives by cleaning the air and making roads safer; cutting congestion in hundreds of cities; and reducing the contribution of transportation to harmful climate change," said Joan Clos, executive director of U.N.-HABITAT, a U.N. agency focused on urban development.

The development banks estimated that between 2010 and 2020, developing countries in Asia will need more than $2.5 trillion in transportation investment, while Latin America will require $0.7 trillion.

In Africa, transport investment requirements of $18.3 billion annually will be needed for the period up to 2020, the development banks said.

(Editing by W Simon)

Fast-tracking Projects

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Oil Prices

Oil Prices

Brent oil rises above $62 as energy firms slash investments  Full Article 

Space Programme

Space Programme

ISRO tests its heaviest space launch vehicle, eyes global market   Full Article 

Coal India Strike

Coal India Strike

Coal India workers threaten five-day strike, stokes output worries  Full Article 

Lakhvi Granted Bail

Lakhvi Granted Bail

Pakistan court bails man accused of masterminding Mumbai attack  Full Article 

GST Bill

GST Bill

Cabinet clears bill for nationwide goods and services tax.  Full Article 

Aviation Sector

Aviation Sector

Breakingviews: SpiceJet rescue is no fix for India aviation woes.  Full Article 

Global Economy

Global Economy

Fed confident on U.S. growth, opens door wider to rate hike.  Full Article 

Reuters Poll

Reuters Poll

BSE Sensex to hit 32,980 by December 2015  Full Article 

Banking Sector

Banking Sector

Japan banks to bulk up India presence on improving ties   Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device  Full Coverage