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Partnership for Sustainable Urban Transport in Asia
ADB and the World Resources Institute (WRI) to cooperate on a comprehensive program aimed at enhancing the environmental sustainability of transport and mobility throughout Asia.

MANILA, PHILIPPINES AND WASHINGTON DC, USA (30 June 2004) – The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the World Resources Institute (WRI) today announced their cooperation on a comprehensive program aimed at enhancing the environmental sustainability of transport and mobility throughout Asia.

The Partnership for Sustainable Urban Transport in Asia (PSUTA), outlined in a Letter of Agreement between ADB and WRI, calls upon EMBARQ – The WRI Center for Transport and the Environment ( – to review existing experiences and capacities on sustainable transport in Asia, draw up a set of key indicators for three cities in Asia, and develop a strategic framework that cities throughout the region can use to develop medium-term sustainable transport strategies.

Funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), PSUTA is an important part of the Business Plan of the whole program of the Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities for 2004 (

"ADB feels that the emphasis placed by EMBARQ on the development of quantitative indicators for sustainable transport is most appropriate for the situation in Asian cities," said Charles Melhuish, ADB’s lead transport sector specialist.

"So far very few cities in Asia have been able to formulate policies that are based on a true reflection of the economic costs of air pollution and congestion."

Under the auspices of the partnership, EMBARQ will conduct case studies in three representative cities across Asia, the first two being Hanoi, Vietnam and Xian, China. Discussions with candidates for the third one are ongoing.

The first stage of the project involves the development of key indicators of sustainable urban transport throughout Asia. Emphasizing a quantitative analysis of factors affecting access to transportation, traffic safety and air quality, these indicators will be the foundation of the city case studies.

The case studies will consist of a critical review of baseline data as well as recommendations on the institutional arrangements and organizational and technological capacity necessary for sustainable urban transport planning in each city.

In the final stage, the partnership will put forward a strategic framework, to help cities throughout the region to develop an integrated sustainable transport plan for their particular transport situation.

"Addressing sustainable transport in the rapidly emerging economies of Asia today simply makes sense if cities hope to avoid the air pollution, traffic congestion and sprawl that have plagued industrialized countries over the past century," said Dr. Lee Schipper, director of research for EMBARQ.

"This project presents forward-thinking city governments with the opportunity to get it right as they develop what will soon be the largest transport markets on the planet."

Established in 2002, with the support of the Shell Foundation, EMBARQ –The World Resources Institute Center for Transport and the Environment acts as a catalyst for socially, financially, and environmentally sound solutions to the problems of urban transport. EMBARQ is currently engaged in sustainable transport planning projects in Mexico City, Mexico and Shanghai, China – two of the world’s largest cities with populations of 18 and 15 million, respectively.

For more information about the Partnership for Sustainable Urban Transport in Asia, please visit: or

The Asian Development Bank ( is dedicated to reducing poverty in the Asia and Pacific region through pro-poor sustainable economic growth, social development, and good governance.

The World Resources Institute ( is an environmental research and policy organization that creates solutions to protect the Earth and improve people’s lives.

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