KATHMANDU, May 10: As green policies can make growth inclusive, efficient, affordable, and above all ensure sustainable economic expansion in years ahead, the governments should think green when pursing growth policies, says a new report of the World Bank (WB).
The report titled ´Inclusive Green Growth: The Pathway to Sustainable Development´ launched on Thursday urges the governments to change their approach to growth policies by focusing not just on what is being produced, but also what is being used up and polluted in the process.
The WB released the report at the Global Green Growth Summit in Seoul and while launching it the WB officials debunked the claim that green growth approach is a luxury that most countries cannot afford. Instead, they pointed at political barriers and a lack of appropriate financing instruments as the chief obstacles to green growth.
The report asserts that assigning value to farmland, minerals, rivers, oceans, forests and biodiversity, and awarding property rights, would offer governments, industry and individuals sufficient incentive to manage them in an efficient, inclusive and sustainable manner.
“The WB strongly supports incorporating natural capital into national accounts and will be seeking commitments from countries at the United Nations Rio+20 Summit in Brazil next month,” the report adds.
The report cautions that green growth is not inherently inclusive, but argues that it can be designed to be so. While better environmental performance will generally benefit the poorest and most vulnerable, green growth policies must be carefully designed to maximize benefits and minimize costs, particularly during the transition, states the report.
Among others, the report urges the governments to focus on the policies and investments that need to be made within the next 5-10 years adopting green growth approach in order to avoid getting locked into unsustainable paths, damaging policy reversals and costly public health consequences.
On the occasion, the Korean government pledged US$ 40 million to strengthen and expand the WB Group´s global green growth portfolio by tapping into and leveraging Korea´s successful experience.
“The transition to green growth paths is not easy. Sharing know how and capacity is imperative if developing countries are to leapfrog inefficient and outdated growth and production patterns,” the statement quoted South Korean Minister of Strategy and Finance Jaewan Bahk as saying.