Progress towards the establishment of the Technology Bank for the Least developed Countries: the appointment of the members of the Governing Council of the Technology Bank for the LDCs and the establishment of a dedicated Trust Fund

The 2011 Istanbul Programme of Action called for the establishment of a technology bank and a science, technology and innovation supporting mechanism dedicated to least developed countries (the “Technology Bank”), a long-standing priority of the LDCs confirmed in the 2015 Addis Ababa Action Agenda and in Sustainable Development Goal 17. The establishment of the Technology Bank is expected to be the first target of the SDGs to be met.

Preparatory work towards the Technology Bank culminated with the report of the feasibility study prepared by a High-Level Panel of Experts in 2015. The Panel’s recommendations highlighted that the Technology Bank, modelled on the United Nations University, has the potential to strengthen national capabilities and provide expertise to the world’s least developed countries, ensuring that they are no longer left behind in achieving internationally agreed development goals. The panel underscored that the establishment of the technology bank is not only required but also feasible. On that basis the General Assembly requested the Secretary-General to take the steps necessary to launch and operationalize the Technology Bank by 2017.

In order to expedite the process the Secretary General has appointed the members of the Governing Council of the Technology Bank, which is foreseen to be the governing body of the Technology Bank once formally established by the General Assembly. In the period leading up to the formal establishment the members of the Governing Council will provide support to the Secretary General in undertaking the necessary steps towards the operationalization of the Technology Bank and in particular formulate principles and policies governing the activities and operations of the technology bank, including preparing its Charter for consideration and adoption by the General Assembly.

The members of the Governing Council are:

Ann Aerts Novartis, Head of the Novartis Foundation, member of the Broadband Commission Foundation
Aggrey Ambali, Head of STI Hub, NEPAD
Abdoulaye Yero Baldé, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research of the Republic of Guinea
Sonia Bashir Kabir, Managing Director of Microsoft Bangladesh
Bitrina Diyamett, Executive Director of the Science, Technology and Innovation Policy Research Organization (STIPRO)
Xiaolan Fu, Director, Technology and Management Centre for Development, Oxford University
Zakri Abdul Hamid, Science Adviser to the Prime Minister of Malaysia
Orkun Hasekioğlu, Executive Vice President, TÜBITAK
Mohamed H.A. Hassan, President of the InterAcademy Partnership (IAP)
Rosibel Ochoa, Associate Vice Chancellor Technology Partnerships, University of California Riverside
Frank Rijsberman, Chief Executive Officer, Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research (CGIAR)
Alfred Watkins, Chairman of the Global Solutions Summits
Gyan Chandra Acharya, Under Secretary-General and High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (UN-OHRLLS)
The Secretary General asked Prof. Hassan to serve as the Chair of the Governing Council and Under-Secretary General Acharya to be his representative in the Council and serve as vice-chair.

In addition, the Secretary General has set up an interim trust fund for the preparatory phase of the Technology Bank in the lead up to its establishment by the General Assembly. This Trust Fund is open to contributions from Member States and other stakeholders, including the private sector and foundations.

Press release on the appointment of the Governing Council members.