The COVID 19 pandemic has triggered devastating socio-economic crises that undermine the prospects of meeting Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the Asia-Pacific region. The pandemic has laid bare inequalities and vulnerabilities in societies that leave them exposed in the face of economic and non-economic shocks and have long impeded progress on the SDGs. In this context, the 2021 ESCAP ADB UNDP Asia-Pacific SDG Partnership Report examines how the region can build forward better to leave no country behind for sustainable development.
This interactive side event will highlight the evolving impacts of the pandemic in the region, and focus on the role of digitalization, digital financing and regional cooperation as key elements to building forward from COVID-19 for the SDGs. While rapid digitalization was able to reduce the impact of the pandemic in many countries, it has reinforced vulnerabilities and inequalities due to the digital divide. The report explores how countries can harness digitalization in creating a citizen-centric systems that enable the SDGs. It also examines the need for enhanced cooperation among countries to improve physical connectivity, enhance financial and economic cooperation, increase investment and cooperation in building human capabilities and to ensure that no country is left behind.