The Asian Development Bank (ADB) successfully held its 51st Annual Meeting at its headquarters in Manila on 2-5 May. The theme of the event is “Linking People and Economies for Inclusive Development.”
ADB, in partnership with ASSIST, organized a consultation workshop about ADB’s new long term strategy, called Strategy 2030 (S2030) which aims to respond to the changes brought about by a rapidly evolving Asia and the Pacific. Over 130 local and international civil society organizations (CSOs) leaders from ADB’s member countries attended.
ADB Vice President for Knowledge Management and Sustainable Development Bambang Susantono opened the event, highlighting the importance of CSO actions in development. “ADB would like to learn from CSOs’ rich experience in promoting inclusiveness as [they] build on principles that place people – particularly the poor and marginalized – at the center of the development process,” he said.
After the consultations, ADB and ASSIST Asia launched the CSO Plasa. Inspired by the concept of the “plasa” as a public square were citizens gather to socialize and be entertained, the CSO Plasa became a venue for stakeholders in the development sector to share and exchange ideas, and discuss.
Throughout the week, panel discussions on topics relevant to the sector were conducted, highlighting the role of CSOs in ensuring inclusive development. Interspersed between these are short presentations of select CSOs and non-government organizations (NGOs) on their various initiatives that lead toward the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).