The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will double its annual investment in clean energies to 2 billion USD to accelerate the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and support low-carbon industries in Asia, the ADB office in Hanoi has announced.

According to ADB President Haruhiko Kuroda, the investment, which represents only a fraction of the region’s financing needs in the area of clean energies, is expected to be the catalyst that will draw in more finance from private sector and carbon trading markets.

The doubled investment, which is part of the ADB’s Energy Efficiency Initiative (EEI), will take effect as of 2013.

The EEI has financed several renewable energy programmes in Asia such as hydropower developments in China , Bhutan and Vietnam .

In 2008, the ADB reached its target set in 2004, to spend 1 billion USD on clean energy annually.

The bank has also supported the upgrading and expansion of energy efficient public transport systems in some Asian cities within its Sustainable Transport Initiative./.