Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Haruhiko Kuroda has called for regional governments and the private sector to do more to help the 1.8 billion people in Asia who lack access to adequate sanitation. “There is urgency to this moment,” Mr. Kuroda said in opening remarks at the Sanitation Dialogue at ADB’s Manila Headquarters. He added that the issue of sanitation “poses enormous challenges to Asia’s environment and public health.”
[...] Mr. Kuroda stressed that sanitation, like water supply, cannot be sustained on government budgets alone and that more needs to be done to attract private sector investment. “Key to a change in strategy is the consideration of sanitation as a business,” Mr. Kuroda said. “The economic returns of good sanitation have been demonstrated universally and we must find clever ways of translating them into effective and sustainable solutions for Asia.”
ADB has committed 20% of its Water Financing Partnership Facility to sanitation, which will help provide 200 million people with sustainable access to safe drinking water and improved sanitation. Mr. Kuroda cited successful national sanitation initiatives in Indonesia, the Philippines, and Viet Nam. [...] “Our annual average lending pipeline for sanitation has increased [...] to $710 million for 2008-2010,” Mr. Kuroda said, adding that as a proportion of ADB’s overall funding commitments, water and sanitation projects are expected to increase from an average of 8.5% in 2003-07 to about 17% in 2008-10.
Source: ADB,03 Mar 2009