5th Meeting of the GMS Urban Development Working Group
The 5th Meeting of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Urban Development Working Group (UDWG) was held via web-based conferencing (Zoom) on 23 February 2022 with the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT) of the Government of Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) as host.
The meeting's main objective was to discuss emerging information and communications technology (ICT) and the role of unified communications and digital solutions, and highlight to water service providers in Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) countries new and transformative opportunities for (i) more efficient water management, and (ii) improved customer services. The group discussed the following:
- Impacts on strengthened water security, enhanced service delivery, and more profound resilience against the impacts of climate change, public health, and water-related disasters.
- Application to water management via ‘smart water.’ In the context of the GMS, it is believed that adoption of smart water principles can improve the resilience of and equitable access to urban water.
The meeting also provided briefings by the GMS Secretariat on the following:
- The GMS Strategic Framework 2030 (GMS-2030) and its relevance to urban development,
- The GMS COVID-19 Response and Recovery Plan and its relevance to urban development,
- Steps towards developing a Results Framework of GMS-2030 to be approved in 2022, and
- Steps towards developing a new GMS Urban Development Strategic Framework (2023-2030) to be approved in 2022-2023.
The meeting was chaired by Mr. Sengdara Douangmyxay, Deputy Director General of the Department of Housing and Urban Planning, MPWT, Lao PDR. It was co-chaired by Mr. Alan Baird, Principal Urban Development Specialist and Mr. Antonio Ressano-Garcia, Principal Regional Cooperation Specialist, both from the Asian Development Bank (ADB). GMS UDWG members and their representatives participated in the event.