CAREC ready to undertake all efforts to support Tajikistan’s initiatives, says ADB official


February 24, 2010, Mavjouda Hasanova



An Asian Development Bank (ADB) delegation representing the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Program, comprising Ms. Shigeko Hattori, Director of ADB's Regional Cooperation Division, and Mr. Ushio Tashibu, Regional Cooperation Specialist, visited Tajikistan on February 22-23.


During their stay here, the delegation met with senior government officials to discuss regional economic integration and prospects for Central Asia; CAREC transport, energy and trade strategies; and preparations for the upcoming CAREC Senior Officials Meeting scheduled for April in Manila.


Ms. Shigeko Hattori noted at a news conference in Dushanbe on February 23 that CAREC occupies a special place in the regional cooperation though there are many other initiatives in the region as well.


“The Program is collaborating with six partners in the region that means that we have resources to finance suggested regional cooperation initiatives,” Ms. Hattori said. She noted that the CAREC priority areas include transport, energy, trade facilitation and trade policy.


The ADB Regional Cooperation Division director expressed satisfaction with understanding and support of the Government of Tajikistan for implementation of the Regional Economic Cooperation Program.


According to her, interesting ideas and proposals were suggested during talks with government officials in Dushanbe.  CAREC is ready to undertake all efforts to support initiatives suggested by Tajikistan, Ms. Hattori noted.


Tajikistan is a major beneficiary of the CAREC program, which is focused on financing infrastructure projects and improving the region's policy environment in the priority areas of transport, energy, and trade facilitation. There are four large ongoing investment projects funded under the CAREC Program in Tajikistan for a total of more than $180 million. The projects are: the rehabilitation of the Dushanbe-Kyrgyz border road, customs modernization, construction of power transmission line between Tajikistan and Afghanistan, and reconstruction of 500 kV switchyard in Norak HPP.


Founded in 1997, CAREC is a partnership of eight countries −  Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan − and six multilateral institutions: ADB, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, International Monetary Fund, Islamic Development Bank, United Nations Development Programme and World Bank. ADB has served as CAREC Secretariat since 2000.


Tajikistan joined ADB in 1998, and to date has received total assistance of about $560 million in concessional loans, grants and technical assistance from this institution.


ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in the Asia and Pacific region through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members – 48 from the region.