Headquarters for the United Nations Economic and Social Commisssion for Asia in Bangkok, Thailand. (File photo)
Bangkok (People’s Daily) – Officials from nine countries in the Asia-Pacific region committed to advance regional cooperation and focused on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the 3rd Ministerial Conference on Space Applications for Sustainable Development in the Thai capital on Wednesday.
The ministerial declaration was agreed upon at the conference co-organized by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the Royal Government of Thailand.
This year’s event brought together space faring countries and those who do not have the capabilities to use geospatial information and space applications.
Hongjoo Hahm, Officer-in-Charge of ESCAP, said during the opening that endorsements from ministerial declarations reaffirm commitment from neighboring governments on the key role space applications have when it comes to sustainability.
Space applications have the potential to boost progress, yet many countries in the region still face challenges in areas of access, coordination, and usage, Hahm explained.
“Our region has the potential to achieve a developmental transformation that will serve as a global model on the cooperative use of innovative technologies for the common good of humankind” said Hahm, emphasizing how ESCAP has used geospatial services across the region to support disaster risk reduction and sustainable development.
Last month, Mongolia established a drought monitoring system with support from regional service nodes in China, India, and Thailand.
To address the gaps, and build upon decades of investment in space applications, the conference attendees agreed on the Asia-Pacific Plan of Action on Space Applications for Sustainable Development (2018 – 2030) - a regionally-coordinated blueprint to support countries, particularly those with special needs to achieve the 2030 Agenda.