The ITT for LLDCs hosted a successful conference on “Exploring Connectivity in Landlocked Developing Countries“ that took place yesterday, April 20, 2017, in the UN House in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
The conference was a collaboration of the ITT for LLDCs and the University of Sydney.
The cooperation of the two has started already in 2015 with signing of the Memorandum of Understanding and the mutual interest in research and knowledge sharing. The joint research project document was established and both sides agreed to develop a total of 3 research papers on transport and access, trade and development as well as ICT and connectivity issues of LLDCs.
This joint conference introduced the final draft reports of the joint research project and encouraged debate among the government officials, embassies, researchers, academics, think tanks and private sector representatives. The conference was also attended by the guests of honour Depuy Minister for Road and Transport Development H.E. B. Tsogtgerel and Foreign Policy Advisor to the Prime Minister of Mongolia, Ms. N. Chimguundari.
The conference was opened by the State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia, Mr. D. Davaasuren.
The conference had three sessions.
Session 1: International Trade Connectivity
Revisiting ‘Dutch Disease’: The Impact of Foreign Direct Investment and Economic Diversification on the International Trade and Food Security of Laos by Dr Sandra Seno-Alday
Session 1 revised the ‘Dutch disease’ phenomenon within the context of Laos, the mineral-rich LLDC in Southeast Asia. Moreover, the study explores the impact of foreign direct investment on economic diversification in Laos, and further explores the effects of economic diversification on economic growth, international trade position, and food security.
Session 2: ICT Connectivity
The Process of Technology Leapfrogging: Insights from the National ICT Infrastructure Development Journey of Azerbaijan by Dr Barney Tan
Session 2 introduced the findings of a case study of the ICT infrastructure development journey of Azerbaijan and draw insights into how they achieved high Internet penetration rate that approaches the level of developed countries. Moreover, this session will not only explain the four steps of Azerbaijan’s technology leap in ICT, but also the economic and social implications of those steps as well.
Session 3: Transport Connectivity
Modelling the Potential for Aviation Liberalization in Central Asia: Market analysis and implications for the One-Belt-One-Road initiative by Dr Xiaowen Fu
Session 3 focused on Central Asia’s LLDCs and the importance of aviation liberalization for them. This study uses observed industry panel data spanning from 2007 to 2015 to quantify the market potential and predict airline route entry in counterfactual scenarios, so that different liberalization schemes can be simulated. Empirical results identified substantial market potential in Central Asia – China aviation market in terms of serviceable routes upon further liberalization. Dr. Xiaowen Fu’s team consisted of Dr. Adolf Ng from the University of Manitoba and Dr. Achim I. Czerny from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University.
All presentations were very positively received and actively discussed, during the conference and discussion and networking continued during the reception that concluded the conference.
We hope to continue this successful cooperation with these academic institutions and provide innovative solutions through research and fruitful debate among academia, government and the public.
Very soon all presentations will be uploaded.
Presentations are available to download here