[hepr-vn] ECONOMIC CRISIS ROLLING BACK ASIA’S DEVELOPMENT GAINS – UN OFFICIAL
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Thu Jul 16 04:17:34 EST 2009
Subject: ECONOMIC CRISIS ROLLING BACK ASIA’S DEVELOPMENT GAINS – UN OFFICIAL
Date: Wed, 15 Jul 2009 14:00:13 -0400
From: UNNews <UNNews at un.org>
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ECONOMIC CRISIS ROLLING BACK ASIA’S DEVELOPMENT GAINS – UN OFFICIAL
New York, Jul 15 2009 2:00PM
The economic crisis is rolling back the significant progress made to date in
Asia and the Pacific in meeting the Millennium Development Goals
(<"http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/">MDGs) – which range from halving extreme
poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary
education, all by the target date of 2015 – according to a senior United Nations
Noeleen Heyzer, Executive Secretary of the UN Economic and Social Commission for
Asia and the Pacific (<"http://www.unescap.org/">ESCAP), said her organization
has responded to the crisis by encouraging policies that include social
programmes such as health coverage, pensions, education and agricultural
extension services, as well as investment in small and medium scale enterprises.
“The huge scale of government spending in the pipeline in many countries offers
an unprecedented opportunity to design development policies that will bring
about more inclusive and sustainable development,” Ms. Heyzer said during the
course of the substantive session of the UN Economic and Social Council, which
is currently taking place in Geneva.
“Pro-poor policies aimed at strengthening social protection systems not only
create the social foundations for more inclusive societies, they free up
spending of consumers. In other words social protection systems also make good
She added that financial stimulus packages and reforms could help create a more
integrated and coordinated Asia and the Pacific that builds upon collective
regional strengths and resources.
In addition, she highlighted the need for appropriate investments in
infrastructure to create economic corridors that link less developed countries
to economic centres in the region, thereby increasing intra-regional trade.
As a result, the recovery of larger economies like China, India and the Republic
of Korea will have “greater reciprocal positive spin offs” for their smaller
Ms. Heyzer noted that ESCAP has sought to provide its member States with the
necessary strategic analysis, policy options and technical assistance.
“Our flagship publication, the Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the
Pacific 2009, provides a compelling analytical basis for the policy reforms that
the region will need to collectively implement in response to the economic
crisis,” she said.
The report predicts that developing nations in the region will see their growth
drop from 5.8 per cent last year to 3 per cent this year, with as many as 23
million people – particularly women in the manufacturing sector – potentially
losing their jobs.
For its part, the Asian Development Bank estimates that the number of poor
people in Asia and the Pacific could climb by 60 million in 2009 and approach
100 million by 2010, thwarting the region’s achievement of the MDGs.
For more details go to UN News Centre at http://www.un.org/news
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