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Expert Group Meeting on Financing Infrastructure Development for Enhanced Integration of LLDCs into Global Trade

4 October, 2017 - 5 October, 2017


Landlocked developing countries (LLDCs) face development challenges owing to their geographical disadvantage of lacking direct territorial access to the sea and their remoteness and isolation from world markets. Critical infrastructure deficiencies, long distances to ports and poor trade facilitation result in high transport and overall trade costs. The LLDCs pay almost double in trade costs when compared to their neighbouring coastal countries. These high costs reduce competitiveness, diminish export profits, inflate the prices of imported inputs for manufacturing, discourage investment and undermine LLDCs’ efforts to fully gain benefits from global flows of knowledge, technology, capital and innovation.

Reducing the high costs and improving the export competitiveness of the LLDCs requires addressing both the hard physical infrastructure, and the soft infrastructure. It requires the LLDCs and transit countries to work together to provide adequate physical infrastructure in the transport, energy and ICT sectors. Development of quality and adequate transport infrastructure such as roads, railroads, seaports, and airports is important for connecting the LLDCs to the markets.

The Vienna Programme of Action (VPoA) for the LLDCs for the decade 2014 to 2024 underscores the importance of partnerships between LLDCs and transit countries for the development/improvement and regular maintenance of their transport, energy and ICT infrastructure and stresses the importance of promoting enabling legal environments and institutional arrangements.


The main objective is to review how to enhance resource mobilization from the key sources of financing for infrastructure development and maintenance for the LLDCs and provide recommendations that can advance the implementation of the Vienna Programme of Action and support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals by the LLDCs.

In this regard the meeting is expected to:

  1. Review the key trends of financing transport, energy and ICT infrastructure in regions with the LLDCs – identifying the major challenges and opportunities;
  2. Share ideas, lessons and best practices on how to improve use of the different sources of financing – including domestic resources, official development assistance, public and private sector partnerships, South-South and Triangular cooperation, dedicated trust funds and special windows in multi-lateral resources, and innovative sources of funding;
  3. Identify other alternative and innovative sources of finance that can be used for infrastructure development and provide guidance on how the LLDCs can access the resources; and
  4. Identify recommendations on how to better utilise available resources and how to expand the resource envelope.

The deliberations at the meeting should build on available reports, analysis, think pieces, research papers and statistics.


Concrete recommendations on financing infrastructure development will be suggested that are important for accelerating the implementation of the 2030 development agenda, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda and the Vienna Programme of Action for LLDCs. The meeting will suggest how the LLDCs could optimally combine different financing modalities and instruments to address the infrastructure finance needs.

Meeting Document  
Programme English
Concept Note English
Report on EGM for Financing Infrastructure in LLDCs English

Documents Presented in the Expert Group Meeting on LLDCs, 4-5 October 2017

Welcome and Introduction
Ms. Fekitamoeloa Katoa ‘Utoikamanu, Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States.English
Session 1
Overview on Trends in infrastructure funding by thematic sector: Challenges, Opportunities and Recommendations
Transport sector
Mr. Robin Carruthers Transport expert and independent consultant
Energy sector
Mr. Martin Lugmayr, Sustainable Energy Expert, UNIDO
ICT sector
Ms. Kadiatou Sall-Beye, Project Officer, ITU
Session 2
Enhancing of Domestic Funding for Infrastructure Development - government spending, cost recovery and management of public utilities, domestic capital markets, national banks, use of innovative funding: Recommendations
Professor Melvin Ayogu, University of Cape TownEnglish
Mr. Krishnan Sharma, Senior Economic Affairs Officer, Financing for Development Office, United Nations DESAEnglish
Mr. Krishan Thapar, Chairman, Asian Institute of Transport Development (AITD) English
National perspectives by the LLDCs
Session 3
Enhancing development cooperation for financing infrastructure (ODA/Aid for Trade, New financing mechanisms and South-South Cooperation): Trends, Challenges and Recommendations
Mr. Frans Lammersen, Principal Administrator, OECD English
Mr. Raul Torres, Counsellor, Development Division, WTO English
Session 4
Optimizing financing from international and regional finance institutions and private sector financing for infrastructure development, including Public-Private-Partnerships: Trends, Challenges and Recommendations

Mr. Mircea Ciopraga, Secretary General, Permanent Secretariat of the Intergovernmental Commission TRACECA English
Mr. Adeyinka Adeyemi, Senior Inter-regional Adviser and  Head of Regional Integration and Infrastructure Cluster/NEPAD Focal Point, UN ECA
Latin America
Ms. Azhar Jaimurzina, Economic Affairs Officer, UN ECLAC
Mr. André Sceia, Information Systems Officer, UN ECE
Mr. Jens Hügel, Head - Goods Transport & Sustainable Development, International Road Transport Union (IRU)English
Session 5
Enhancing the capacity of the LLDCs to access international and regional funds and facilities (including climate financing) and other innovative sources of financing: Policy recommendations

Ms. Jaehyang So, Senior Advisor, World Bank Group English
Mr. David Jackson, Director, Local Development Finance, UNCDF English
Mr. Adeyinka Adeyemi, Senior Inter-regional Adviser and  Head of Regional Integration and Infrastructure Cluster/NEPAD Focal Point, UN ECA English
Ms. Azhar Jaimurzina, Economic Affairs Officer, UN ECLAC English
Session 6
Way Forward, Recommendations and Closing

Presentation of Summary of Discussions and key policy messages – Ms. Gladys Mutangadura, Senior Programme Officer, UN-OHRLLSEnglish
Closing Remarks
Ms. Fekitamoeloa Katoa ‘Utoikamanu, Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States


4 October, 2017
5 October, 2017


UN Headquarters, Conference Room 11
405 E 42nd St
New York City, NY 10017 United States
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