UN-ESCAP Executive Director to speak at 6th South Asia Economic Summit

Wednesday, 28 August 2013 00:44 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP) Executive Secretary Dr. Noeleen Heyzer will visit Sri Lanka to deliver the keynote speech at the inauguration of the 6th South Asia Economic Summit (SAES), taking place at the Cinnamon Grand Hotel in Colombo on 2 September 2013. Dr. Heyzer is the ninth Executive Secretary of the UN-ESCAP, appointed by the UN Secretary-General in August 2007. She is the first woman to occupy this position since its founding in 1947 and leads the organisation at the level of Under-Secretary-General. Since taking office, Dr. Heyzer has positioned ESCAP as a comprehensive platform for promoting regional co-operation among member states to achieve inclusive and sustainable development in Asia and the Pacific. UN-ESCAP, particularly the South and South West Asia regional office is a partner of the 6th SAES, which is organised by Sri Lanka’s apex economic policy think tank, the Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka (IPS). UN-ESCAP has been partnering with IPS in various research activities over the years and has launched key publications including the ‘ESCAP Economic and Social Survey for the Asia and the Pacific’ as well as the ‘Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report’. This year, under the main theme ‘Towards a Stronger, Dynamic and Inclusive South Asia’, the Summit will debate and discuss the current socio-economic policy challenges facing the region and will explore new strategies for sustainable and inclusive growth. The content of the Summit is uniquely structured along what is being called ‘The Big Four’ – Harnessing Human Capital Potential; Tackling Environmental Challenges and Climate Change; Managing Intra-country Growth Disparities; and Building Competitiveness of the Private Sector, which will be deliberated under 4 plenary sessions and 12 parallel sessions. On the sidelines of the Summit, UN-ESCAP will be holding a ‘Policy Dialogue’ on 3 September around its recently published theme study on ‘Building Resilience to Natural Disasters and Major Economic Crises’, which provides a comprehensive response to addressing multiple shocks in South Asia and the wider Asia-Pacific region.