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ASEAN Discusses Economic Sustainability While Increasing Public Transportation Infrastructure

By Southern Poverty Law Center at 11:39 AM 5/30/2020 (PDT)

As the ASEAN continued its discussion into economic sustainability, the delegates heavily discussed how to make developing public transportation economical possible in their respective countries.

Countries including Indonesia discussed that while it is crucial to develop infrastructure, nations should conserve as much money as possible in an effort to not overspend funds on unnecessary amenities for citizens. Singapore and the Philippines voiced similar agendas, stating the importance of conserving funds in order to build basic, but sufficient public transportation infrastructure.

This discussion prompted the talk of where funding comes from entirely. Singapore suggested that individual governments support public infrastructure, while countries including Vietnam and the Philippines fired back, saying that many countries in the ASEAN would not have enough funding for infrastructure themselves, suggesting that more developed countries in the committee, like China, Japan, and South Korea aid in funding public transportation infrastructure in other ASEAN countries. As this topic evolved, it led to critical discussion relating to how to use non-governmental organizations to support this cause (brought to attention by China).

As the committee continued to discuss the economic sustainability of public transportation infrastructure for governments, Singapore spoke about the need to make transportation sustainable for the citizens themselves. The delegate addressed the need to make public transportation low cost, bringing the discussion back to the citizens who will use this piece of infrastructure. Singapore voiced its concerns about the cost for public transport, showing its dedication of accounting for low-income people in countries of the ASEAN.

This first committee session closed with the discussion of revitalizing existing methods of transportation and using those systems more with Indonesia suggesting that existing trams, buses, and canals could be used in the search for increasing public transportation.

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