Report of High-Level Policy Dialogue on COVID-19 and South Asia: Socio-Economic Impacts, National Strategies and Subregional Cooperation for Building Back Better

Report of High-Level Policy Dialogue on COVID-19 and South Asia: Socio-Economic Impacts, National Strategies and Subregional Cooperation for Building Back Better

Date: 
Tuesday, August 18, 2020
Type: 
Public information and advocacy materials
Abstract

The Virtual High-Level Policy Dialogue on COVID-19 and South Asia: Socio-Economic Impacts, national Strategies and Subregional Cooperation for Building Back Better was convened by UNESCAP on 9 July 2020. The objective was to provide a platform for subregional organizations and senior policy makers from South Asian countries to discuss subregional and national perspectives, take stock of the lessons and share best practices learned in combating the pandemic and initiate forward-looking dialogue on partnership and collaboration for building back better. UNESCAP policy paper COVID-19 and South Asia: National Strategies and Subregional Cooperation for Accelerating Inclusive, Sustainable and Resilient Recovery, prepared as a part of the UNESCAP’s socio-economic framework, served as the background document for the discussion.

The Dialogue was chaired by the Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Secretary of UNESCAP, H.E. Ms. Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana and the high-level panel included H.E. Mr. Esala Ruwan Weerakoon, Secretary-General of SAARC; H.E. Mr. M Shahidul Islam, Secretary-General of BIMSTEC; H.E. Dr. Mustafa Mastoor, Minister of Economy of Afghanistan; H.E. Mr. Muhammad Abdul Mannan, Minister of Planning of Bangladesh; H.E. Mr. Lyonpo Loknath Sharma, Minister of Economic Affairs, Royal Government of Bhutan; H.E. Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Vice-Chairman of NITI Aayog, India; H.E. Mr. Mohamed Aslam, Minister of National Planning, Housing and Infrastructure of Maldives; H.E. Prof. Dr. Puspa Raj Kadel, Vice Chairman of National Planning Commission of Nepal; H.E. Dr. Shabnum Sarfraz, Member (Social Sector) of the Planning Commission of Pakistan; and Dr. Sugath Yalegama, Director-General of Sustainable Development Council of Sri Lanka. Dr. Nagesh Kumar, Director, UNESCAP-SSWA shared the key messages of the UNESCAP policy paper.

The Dialogue held on MS Teams, was also live streamed on YouTube. Around 500 participants including representatives of governments, academia, think tanks, civil society organizations, and other key stakeholders from South Asian countries participated in the virtual Policy Dialogue. The recording of the event is available here

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Key Highlights HLPD on COVID-19 and South AsiaDownload