Role of infrastructure in regional cooperation and integration

Author: Release date:2019-01-17 22:29:38Source:+Add to My Favorites


吉野直行教授

Prof. Naoyuki Yoshino


亚洲开发银行研究院院长,日本庆应大学名誉教授  

Dean & CEO, Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI) and Professor Emeritus, Keio University, Japan


记者:钟雪莹

Reporter: ZHONG Xueying


良好的基础设施可以在项目周围形成巨大的溢出效应,促进区域合作和一体化。 亚太地区对基础设施投资的需求很大,为了更好地为基础设施融资,世界范围内的多边开发银行应共同努力,同时应通过和私人投资者明确公私部门之间的风险分担并返还部分溢出效应带来的税收来吸引更多私人投资。

Good infrastructure can creates huge spillover effects in the region around a project, which can promote regional cooperation and integration. The demand for infrastructure in the Asia and Pacific region is great. To better finance infrastructure, multilateral development banks should make joint effort, and private investment should be attracted by returning spillover tax revenue to investors and clarifying the risk-sharing between public and private sectors. 


Q2




记者: 支持亚太地区的区域合作与一体化是亚开行重要的战略目标之一。 简而言之,亚开行采取了哪些行动? 

Reporter: Supporting RCI in Asia and the Pacific is one of ADB’s key strategic priorities. Briefly speaking, what actions have ADB taken to support RCI in Asia and the Pacific?


野直行: 区域合作与一体化在加速经济增长、减少贫困和经济差距、提高生产力水平和就业水平以及加强制度建设方面发挥着关键作用。通过推进贸易一体化、跨区域供应链和更强大的金融联系,它能缩小各成员国之间的发展差距,促进各成员国的共同发展。通过促进区域合作和一体化的项目让亚太地区更紧密的聚集在一起是亚开行创建以来的使命之一。

Naoyuki Yoshinol: RCI plays a critical role in accelerating economic growth, reducing poverty and economic disparity, raising productivity and employment, and strengthening institutions. It narrows development gaps between ADB’s developing member countries (DMCs) by building closer trade integration, intraregional supply chains, and stronger financial links, enabling slow-moving economies to speed their own expansion. Bringing Asia and the Pacific together through projects that promote regional cooperation and integration has been a cornerstone of ADB's work since it was created.

2006年,亚开行公布了区域合作与一体化战略的四大支柱。其中最重要的是支持有关跨境基础设施和相关软件的区域和次区域经济合作计划。首先,亚行在硬基础设施提供资金,比如道路,桥梁和发电厂。其次,软性基础设施的投资,例如教育。

In 2006, ADB adopted a RCI strategy, which is anchored on four pillars. The most important one is to support regional and sub-regional economic cooperation programs on cross-border infrastructure and related software. Firstly, ADB is providing money for hard infrastructure. The fruits of those efforts can be seen in roads, bridges and power plants. Secondly, financing for soft infrastructure, for example, education. 

此外,我们向相关国家提供技术援助。除此之外,亚行另外三项区域合作与一体化战略还包括贸易和投资领域的合作与融合、货币金融领域的合作以及区域公共产品的整合与合作。

Besides that, the other three ADB RCI strategy include trade and investment cooperation and integration, monetary and financial cooperation and integration and cooperation in regional public goods.




Q4





记者: 您在演讲中提到,尽管有多边开发银行和政府的投资,但仍不足以满足亚洲基础设施的需求。 在这种情况下,私人资金在基础设施融资中应该扮演什么角色?

Reporter: You mentioned in your speech that though there is public money from development banks and governments, it is still insufficient to satisfy Asia’s infrastructure needs. Under these circumstances, what role can private funds play in financing infrastructure?


野直行: 在亚洲的许多发展中国家,高速公路、火车和各种公共交通工具仍然缺乏,很多基础设施项目面临公共资金短缺的问题。为了满足他们巨大的基础设施需求、缩小投资需求与实际政府可支出之间的差距,私人资金必须投入到基础设施中。

Naoyuki Yoshino: In many developing countries in Asia, highways, trains and various modes of public transport are still lacking. Many of them face a shortage of public funds to meet their huge infrastructure needs. In order to narrow the gap between investment needs and actual government disbursements, the private funds have to be injected in infrastructure investment.

利用私人资金发展基础设施还有其他好处,比如如果对成本和效率更敏感的私人投资者加入,他们会努力督促建设方按期完成建设任务、以最小的建设成本完成项目,并在项目完成后以最低的成本经营。 近年来,政府和社会资本合作(PPP)模式正越来越受到强调。

In addition, utilizing private funds to develop infrastructure has other advantage. If investment all comes from government, it won’t care about how fast the construction is. But if private investors come in, who is cost-sensitive, they will increase pressure to shorten the period of construction so as to complete the project at minimal construction cost, and operate the project profitably at low cost after completion. In recent years, Public-Private partnerships (PPPs), including the use of private funds, are being emphasized.



Q6



记者: 如果由公共基金投资,基础设施更像是一种公共物品,可以为所有人提供费用合理或免费的服务。 但是当私人资金被引入时,这个特征会被改变吗? 您如何看待公私资金的理想占比?

Reporter: If invested by public fund, infrastructure is more like a public good which is available for all the people at a reasonable cost or free of charge. But when private money is injected, will this characteristic be changed? What do you think of the ideal proportion of public fund and private fund?


野直行: 我所说的外溢效应的并不意味着向用户收的价格应该增加。相反,政府应该监管水电等重要基础设施价格,因为它们是使用费。用户使用的费用可能很低,但溢出效应带来的税收增加可以弥补这一点。例如,水电供应良好会使得整个区域发展加快,新的企业和部门会进入,经济增长速度会加快,生产力水平和就业率会提高,这将带来税收增加。私人投资的收益并不是来自于用户使用价格的提高,而是来自外溢效应带来的税收增加。

Naoyuki Yoshino: My idea of spillover effect doesn’t mean that user price should be increased. Oppositely, government should regulate important infrastructure prices such as water and electricity, because they are user charge. User charge can be low, but spillover tax revenue can compensate for that. For example, with good water and electricity supply, the region will be developed, new department will come in and economic growth will be accelerated, productivity and employment will be raised. With good transportation system, as poorer countries' economies become more integrated with those of their richer neighbors, they have more opportunity to boost their growth potential and speed their expansion, which will bring about increased tax revenue. So, I am not talking about conflict between public and private. Public side price should be low because everyone need to drink water, and benefits that private side needs can be got because of the raise of tax revenue generated by good infrastructure.

就公共和私人资金的比例而言,不同的部门会有所不同,并且随着时间的不同也会改变。当某一领域的预期利润不高或风险较大、私人投资者不愿意投资时,政府应该投入更多的资金。例如,政府可以先投资60%,私人投资方则可以提供40%。但是,如果利润变得越来越好,更多的私人投资者愿意投入他们的资金,那么这个比例可能会改变。相反,对于那些人口稠密和发达的地区,很多公司有兴趣投资,那么私人比例可以达到80%,政府比例可以达到20%。所以没有确切的数字,都要取决于未来的期望。

In terms of proportion of public and private money, it will be different due to different sector and will change with time. When the expected profit is not so high or it is risky and private investors are reluctant to invest, government should put more money. For example, government can first invest 60%, and private side offers 40%. But if the profit becomes better and better, more private investors will be willing to put in their money, and the proportion may be changed. Oppositely, for those populated and developed area, many companies are interested to invest in, then the proportion can be 80% from private and 20% from government. So, there is no definite number, but depends on future expectation.



Q8

记者: 中日韩三国的基础设施建设现在已经相对较好。对于他们来说,基础设施是否还是它们合作和一体化的重要因素?

Reporter: For Japan, China and South Korea, whose infrastructure seems to have been relatively well constructed, are infrastructure still important for their cooperation and integration?


吉野直行: 当然,这三个国家还是有机会在三国或者其他亚洲国家进行基础设施合作。但我认为东亚一体化最重要的是文化交流。过去,中国,日本和韩国分别把目光看向了不同的方向。即使我们都想与欧盟合作,情况是日本在与欧盟谈判,中国在与欧盟谈判,韩国在与欧盟谈判。欧盟始终是一个统一的共同体,对于东亚国家来说,我们应该像欧盟一样实现更大程度的合作与一体化,这样我们才会变得更强大。

Naoyuki Yoshino: Still, there are opportunities for them to cooperate in infrastructure within these three countries and in other Asian countries. But I think the most important thing for East Asia integration is cultural exchange. In the past, China, Japan and South Korea used to look at different directions respectively. Even we all want to cooperate with the EU, the situation is that Japan is talking with EU, China is talking with EU and South Korea is talking with EU. The EU is always there as a unified community, and it is also important for East Asian countries to form a coalition to talk with EU. We should cooperate more just as EU does, so that we will be much stronger.

我认为促进中日韩合作的一个重要途径是促进学生之间的交流,比如高中生的交换项目,这样青年一代才能理解我们共同的文化。而且这个交流应该是持续的,交换结束后学生们还可以通过Skype或微信继续沟通,这将带来更好的思想交流。

I think student exchange among China, Japan and South Korea is also important so that our young generation can understand our own culture. Also, there should be continuous exchange. These students can continue their communication with each other through skype or Wechat for example one hour each week, which will lead to better exchange of ideas. It is of great important for RCI in East Asia.



Q10



记者: 美国的战略收缩和保护主义经济政策的复兴给全球化带来了严峻的挑战。您是否觉得欧盟和东亚国家可能在全球治理形成一股合力? 

Reporter: The pullback of the US and revival of protectionist economic policies have raising severe challenges to globalization. In your opinion, is it possible for EU and East Asian countries to form a joint effort in global governance? 


吉野直行: 是的。 美国过去是自由贸易的操纵者,但现正如我之前提到的,自由贸易是好的,但有输家。现在在美国,利益受损者占了很大一部分,所以特朗普已经改变了态度。但总的来说,自由贸易和自由贸易流动可以创造更好的局面,所以没有美国,东亚和欧盟国家应该继续努力。唯一我们必须记住的是,输家必须得到补偿。 例如,如果几十年种水稻的农民发现米价突然下跌,他们会不满。 所以市场的调整必须是渐进的,我们必须证明即使是输家,未来也有更好的机会,这非常重要。

Naoyuki Yoshino: Yes, I think so. The US used to be the operator of free trade, but nowadays, there are many trade unions, labor unions, which is also the reason why its attitude has totally changed. As I mentioned before, free trade is good but there are losers. Loser part now accounts for a large amount in the US today, so Trump has changed its attitude. However, in general, free trade and free trade mobility can create better situation, so without the US, East Asian and EU countries should continue their effort. The only thing we must remember is that, losers must be compensated. For example, if farmers who have cultivated rice for decades find that rice price falls all of a sudden, they will complain. There must be gradual adjustment of market and we must show that even losers will have better chance in the future, which is very important.


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