UN deputy chief calls for ‘courage, vision and solidarity’ to boost middle-income nations

Speaking at a conference on addressing development challenges of middle-income countries (MICs), in Rabat, Morocco, Amina Mohammed said recent crises have laid bare inequalities and exposed stark contrasts. “While developed countries have been able to protect and swiftly support their populations, other countries have been left dependent on the international community and the existing global… Continue reading UN deputy chief calls for ‘courage, vision and solidarity’ to boost middle-income nations

World News in Brief: Artificial Intelligence pledge, child abuse online, Sudan crisis deepens

Lenovo Group, LG AI Research, Mastercard, Microsoft, Salesforce, Telefonica, GSMA network of mobile phone operators, and INNIT have pledged to “integrate the values and principles” of UNESCO’s Recommendation on the Ethics of AI when designing and deploying AI systems. The announcement came at the UN education, science and culture agency’s  Global Forum on AI, taking place… Continue reading World News in Brief: Artificial Intelligence pledge, child abuse online, Sudan crisis deepens

World News in Brief: ICJ to release emergency measures over Israel genocide allegations, Libya flood repair bill, leprosy stigma continues

Since 7 October when Israel launched its military campaign to destroy Hamas in response to the militant group’s terror attacks in southern Israel that left some 1,200 dead and more than 250 taken hostage, Gaza health authorities have reported at least 25,700 killed and some 63,740 injured. In its case, which began earlier this month in… Continue reading World News in Brief: ICJ to release emergency measures over Israel genocide allegations, Libya flood repair bill, leprosy stigma continues

Women’s rights key for Afghanistan’s economic recovery

The report paints a bleak picture of socio-economic conditions since the Taliban returned to power in August 2021, with the erosion of women’s rights and a banking system near collapse, identified as major areas of concern. The Afghan economy has not recovered from the cumulative 27 per cent shrinkage experienced since 2020 and appears to… Continue reading Women’s rights key for Afghanistan’s economic recovery

Global unemployment to increase in 2024, warns ILO report

10 January 2024Economic Development Global unemployment is expected to rise this year, with growing inequality and stagnant productivity also a cause for concern on the economic horizon, the UN labour agency ILO said on Wednesday. Just over five per cent of the world’s workforce is without a job, according to the International Labour Organization’s World Employment and… Continue reading Global unemployment to increase in 2024, warns ILO report

Flagship economic report highlights why global cooperation is key

The flagship forecast launched in New York on Thursday indicates that last year’s stronger-than-expected GDP growth coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic masked short-term risks and structural vulnerabilities in the world economy. The sombre short-term outlook is based on persistently high interest rates, further escalation of conflicts, sluggish international trade, and increasing climate disasters, which… Continue reading Flagship economic report highlights why global cooperation is key

‘Act on the lessons of COVID-19’, Guterres says on Epidemic Preparedness Day 

The COVID-19 pandemic affected hundreds of millions of lives, caused millions of deaths and inflicted devastating impacts on humanity.  After three years of unprecedented global efforts, on 5 May the World Health Organization (WHO)  declared an end to COVID-19 as a public health emergency, stressing however, that it does not mean the disease is no longer… Continue reading ‘Act on the lessons of COVID-19’, Guterres says on Epidemic Preparedness Day 

World News in Brief: End e-cigarette boom urges WHO, measles surge in Europe, Central Asia; crisis for kids in Lebanon

WHO said that 88 countries have no minimum age at which e-cigarettes can be bought and 74 countries have not implemented any e-cigarette regulations. WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called on countries to ramp up prevention measures, saying that “kids are being recruited and trapped at an early age to use e-cigarettes and may get… Continue reading World News in Brief: End e-cigarette boom urges WHO, measles surge in Europe, Central Asia; crisis for kids in Lebanon

UNICEF: 1 in 5 children in world’s richest countries living in poverty

The new findings from the UNICEF research wing focus on Member States of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the European Union (EU).  Analysing child support policies among the group of developed economies, the report finds that despite an overall decrease in poverty of nearly eight per cent over the seven year… Continue reading UNICEF: 1 in 5 children in world’s richest countries living in poverty

World News in Brief: UNCTAD development finance call, Nepal quake update, religious freedom in Nicaragua

That’s the message from the UN’s trade and development body UNCTAD, which called on Tuesday for urgent reform of the international financial system to support the world’s 46 Least Developed Countries. In line with the Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs, these most vulnerable economies urgently require foreign investment to add value to their economic output,… Continue reading World News in Brief: UNCTAD development finance call, Nepal quake update, religious freedom in Nicaragua

UPDATING LIVE: UN General Assembly debates US embargo against Cuba

Global perspective Human stories A view of the General Assembly’s 2021 meeting on the necessity of ending the economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed by US against Cuba. 2 November 2023Economic Development The UN General Assembly is expected to vote on its annual resolution later on Thursday in New York which calls on the United… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: UN General Assembly debates US embargo against Cuba

Amazon, DoorDash, Walmart, trapping workers in poverty: UN rights expert

31 October 2023Human Rights A UN poverty expert called on the CEOs of Amazon, DoorDash and Walmart on Tuesday to address allegations that wages at the US-based corporations are trapping workers in poverty, forcing them to rely on US Government benefits to survive. In separate letters to Amazon CEO Andy Jassy, DoorDash CEO Tony Xu and Walmart… Continue reading Amazon, DoorDash, Walmart, trapping workers in poverty: UN rights expert

Situation in Gaza ‘growing more desperate by the hour’, says UN chief Guterres

The UN chief’s visit comes as the crisis in the Gaza Strip enters its third week following the 7 October incursion by Hamas militants into Israel and Israel’s subsequent declaration of war. Late last week the UN adopted a resolution calling for a humanitarian truce, but the past few days have seen heavy bombardment and… Continue reading Situation in Gaza ‘growing more desperate by the hour’, says UN chief Guterres

Human right to food needs ‘massive investment’: Guterres

23 October 2023Human Rights With 735 million people going hungry last year and three billion unable to afford a healthy diet, the world is “going backwards on our goal of zero hunger by 2030”, the UN chief told the Committee on World Food Security on Monday. Addressing the UN-backed body meeting in Rome on Monday,… Continue reading Human right to food needs ‘massive investment’: Guterres

AI shows ‘great promise for health’ but regulation is key: WHO chief

19 October 2023Economic Development The World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday issued a call for better regulations over the use and potential mis-use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the healthcare industry.   Its new publication emphasises the importance of establishing safe and effective AI systems and fostering dialogue about using it as a positive tool,… Continue reading AI shows ‘great promise for health’ but regulation is key: WHO chief

Guterres: Turn ‘infrastructure emergency’ into opportunity, but also protect nature

António Guterres was speaking at the third international forum on China’s Belt and Road initiative, which has funded and built roads, power plants, bridges, ports and other facilities across developing countries over the past decade.  Although infrastructure “is the foundation of everyday life for people and economies”, Mr. Guterres recalled that billions in the developing… Continue reading Guterres: Turn ‘infrastructure emergency’ into opportunity, but also protect nature

UN calls for closing internet connectivity and digital governance gap

With the Internet holding a critical role in navigating these complexities, the 18th annual Internet Governance Forum hosted by the Government of Japan is under the overarching theme, ‘The Internet We Want – Empowering All People.” Mitigating the risks Considering the rapid tech advances, including in Artificial Intelligence (AI), risking exacerbating existing inequalities, the Forum… Continue reading UN calls for closing internet connectivity and digital governance gap

Global economy a mixed bag, horizon uncertain: UNCTAD

The UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) reported that world economic growth is expected to decelerate from three per cent last year to 2.4 per cent through 2023, with limited signs of a rebound in 2024.   These figures underscore the urgent need for reform of the global financial system, more practical policies to… Continue reading Global economy a mixed bag, horizon uncertain: UNCTAD

World Habitat Day focuses on cities as drivers of growth

Global economic growth is declining to about 2.5 per cent this year, the UN said. Apart from the initial COVID-19 crisis three years ago, and the global financial crisis in 2009, this represents the weakest level since 2001.  Given the size of the contribution of cities to national economies, the future of many countries will… Continue reading World Habitat Day focuses on cities as drivers of growth

UNODC joins regional crime fighters to tackle scams and human trafficking in SE Asia

The focus of the plan is on criminal activity associated with casinos in the region, and other scams including money laundering and cybercrime. The plan of action was announced in the Thai capital by officials from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) together with partner China, and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).… Continue reading UNODC joins regional crime fighters to tackle scams and human trafficking in SE Asia

UN sets out bold solutions to rescue SDG finance

The UN Secretary-General, António Guterres (centre) and the President of the General Assembly (2nd right) Dennis Francis attend the High-level Dialogue on Financing for Development at UN Headquarters. 20 September 2023SDGs Taking urgent steps to deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, world leaders launched a high level dialogue on Financing for Development… Continue reading UN sets out bold solutions to rescue SDG finance

Annual cost for reaching the SDGs? More than $5 trillion: UNCTAD

According to the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), this represents between $1,179 and $1,383 per person, per year.  The study factors in 50 SDG indicators across 90 countries, covering three quarters of the global population.  For the world’s 48 developing economies, the shortfall is estimated at $337 billion annually, if they are to… Continue reading Annual cost for reaching the SDGs? More than $5 trillion: UNCTAD

“Armed conflicts are an offense to human rationality,” Brazil’s Lula da Silva tells UN Assembly

Global inequalities The world is becoming increasingly unequal, according to Mr. Silva. Immersed in a world of intersecting crises, including COVID-19, security, racism, intolerance, and stable access to food and clean water, more must be done to ensure that inequalities do not continue to grow.  “The ten richest billionaires have more wealth than the poorest… Continue reading “Armed conflicts are an offense to human rationality,” Brazil’s Lula da Silva tells UN Assembly

‘Thriving economies’ critical to eradicating hunger and poverty: McCain

14 September 2023Humanitarian Aid Addressing the Security Council on Thursday, the head of the World Food Programme (WFP), Cindy McCain, highlighted the growing need for humanitarian aid worldwide against a backdrop of reduced funding. She called for innovative public-private sector partnerships to respond to tomorrow’s crises.  “I come from the private sector myself,” said WFP‘s… Continue reading ‘Thriving economies’ critical to eradicating hunger and poverty: McCain

Over 330 million children worldwide living in extreme poverty

13 September 2023Economic Development One in every six children is forced to survive on less than $2.15 a day, according to a new report from the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Bank released on Wednesday. The findings show that 333 million children worldwide are living in extreme poverty – a decrease of almost 50 million… Continue reading Over 330 million children worldwide living in extreme poverty

Syria: Urgent response needed to uptick in fighting, economic crisis

In its latest report, the UN Human Rights Council (OHCHR) body found that attacks on civilians, escalating fighting, economic decline and human rights violations persist, despite the country’s re-admission to the League of Arab States. The continued war in Syria is a “monument to the failure of diplomacy” said Inquiry Chair, Paulo Pinheiro. Speaking in… Continue reading Syria: Urgent response needed to uptick in fighting, economic crisis

UN welcomes G20 leaders’ declaration in New Delhi

9 September 2023SDGs The UN welcomed the adoption on Saturday of the G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration, describing it as an example of effective leadership at a time of great divisions in the world. World leaders, meeting in the Indian capital for the annual G20 summit, reached agreement by consensus this afternoon on the declaration,… Continue reading UN welcomes G20 leaders’ declaration in New Delhi

Come together ‘for the common good’, UN chief urges G20 leaders

8 September 2023Economic Development UN Secretary-General António Guterres has arrived in New Delhi for the annual G20 summit with a “simple but urgent appeal” for world leaders in attendance: come together to solve humanity’s biggest challenges. Speaking on the eve of the G20 summit of advanced economies, which will take place in the Indian capital… Continue reading Come together ‘for the common good’, UN chief urges G20 leaders

Afghans are ‘out of options’ and desperately need realistic alternatives to poppy cultivation

The restrictions placed by the Taliban de facto authorities on women and girl’s education and employment have shattered the dreams of many of the women here, but their spirits remain unbroken.  Taliban’s Poppy Ban: Can It Work? The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), through its implementing partner, the Danish Committee for Aid… Continue reading Afghans are ‘out of options’ and desperately need realistic alternatives to poppy cultivation

Africa can become new global supply chain force: UNCTAD

In a new report, UNCTAD shows that Africa can become a major exporter of higher value-added goods, creating growth and jobs, and fuelling a rise in productivity and wages. Launching the report in Nairobi, UNCTAD Secretary-General Rebeca Grynspan insisted it would offer a better future for the continent’s economies. Diversifying trade “builds resilience and enhances innovation”,… Continue reading Africa can become new global supply chain force: UNCTAD

INTERVIEW: Food systems contribute to solving ‘world’s most important challenges’

Corinna Hawkes the Director of the FAO Division of Food Systems and Food Safety says a holistic and sustainable approach is needed that considers economic, social, and environmental factors, and that brings people together, to ensure nutritious food and sustainable livelihoods for all. She was speaking ahead of the UN Food Systems Summit+2 Stocktaking moment, which… Continue reading INTERVIEW: Food systems contribute to solving ‘world’s most important challenges’

Empowering women through social protection: UN rights office

Social protection provides a safety net for the vulnerable through policies and programmes that offer financial assistance, healthcare coverage and social insurance. “It helps prevent social exclusion and promotes social inclusion,” said Mahamane Cisse-Gouro, Director of the Human Rights Council and Treaty Mechanisms Division of human rights office OHCHR. Long-term gender gap The long-term gender… Continue reading Empowering women through social protection: UN rights office

Behind at halftime, but all still to play for in race to 2030 as top political forum closes

19 July 2023SDGs This year’s High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) concluded in New York on Wednesday, laying the groundwork for the crucial SDG Summit in September.  Over the past ten days, world leaders, policymakers, and key stakeholders gathered to review progress, share experiences, and discuss strategies for advancing sustainable development. The HLPF serves as a… Continue reading Behind at halftime, but all still to play for in race to 2030 as top political forum closes

Top UN forum meets to ‘build political momentum’ for SDGs

The ambitious set of objectives agreed in 2015 for people and planet have been derailed by the COVID-19 pandemic and escalating global crises. Since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda the world has undergone significant changes, and progress towards the SDG is falling behind due to financial, energy, food, and humanitarian setbacks exacerbated by geopolitical… Continue reading Top UN forum meets to ‘build political momentum’ for SDGs

UN chief says regulation needed for AI to ‘benefit everyone’

6 July 2023Economic Development The development of artificial intelligence, or AI, “for the good of all” requires guardrails grounded in human rights, transparency and accountability, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said on Thursday. He stressed that AI must benefit everyone, including the third of humanity who are still offline, and insisted on the need to urgently… Continue reading UN chief says regulation needed for AI to ‘benefit everyone’

Financial system must evolve in ‘giant leap towards global justice’: Guterres

Speaking at the Paris Finance Summit, Mr. Guterres said many African States were spending more on debt repayments than on desperately needed healthcare, and that over 50 countries were either in default or “dangerously” close to it. The UN chief called for a debt relief mechanism that supports payment suspensions, longer lending terms and lower… Continue reading Financial system must evolve in ‘giant leap towards global justice’: Guterres

Ukraine war: Guterres calls for continuation of ‘vital’ food and fertilizer agreement

20 June 2023Economic Development The Secretary-General on Tuesday said he was disappointed by the “slowing pace of inspections” under the UN-brokered Black Sea Initiative – the grain and fertilizer deal which has allowed millions of tonnes of food exports to leave Ukraine. Russia confirmed that for 60 days it would continue to be a part… Continue reading Ukraine war: Guterres calls for continuation of ‘vital’ food and fertilizer agreement

One in every 10 children works – instead of going to school

On Monday’s World Day against Child Labour, the International Labour Organization (ILO) shared these staggering numbers as a reminder of the urgent need to end this practice. ILO’s Director-General Gilbert Houngbo said that for the first time in 20 years, child labour is on the rise. “Child labour rarely happens because parents are bad, or… Continue reading One in every 10 children works – instead of going to school

India train disaster: UN chief deeply saddened by loss of life

Passenger trains wait for people to board at the Dhanbad Junction railway station in Jharkhand, northern India. One of the busiest in the region, millions of people pass through this station every year. 4 June 2023Economic Development The UN Secretary-General has expressed his deep sadness over the loss of life and injuries sustained during India’s worst… Continue reading India train disaster: UN chief deeply saddened by loss of life

Despite ‘slightly’ improved food security in Yemen, hunger stalks millions

“The United Nations and its partners made strides in rolling back the worst food insecurity last year, but these gains remain fragile, and 17 million people are still food insecure in Yemen,” said David Gressly, the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for the country. Compared to the same period in 2022, the levels of acutely… Continue reading Despite ‘slightly’ improved food security in Yemen, hunger stalks millions

Stop tobacco farming, grow food instead, says WHO

26 May 2023Health With hunger spreading worldwide and tobacco responsible for eight million deaths each year, countries should stop subsidizing tobacco crops and help farmers grow food, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday. Ahead of World No Tobacco Day on Wednesday 31 May, WHO deplored that 3.2 million hectares of fertile land across… Continue reading Stop tobacco farming, grow food instead, says WHO

African free trade area could spur sustainable growth: UN chief

Mr. Guterres was speaking on the final day of the annual Africa Dialogue Series in New York, where the focus this year was on accelerating implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) – set to be the largest in the world.  Harness the potential  He said the pandemic brought high food and energy… Continue reading African free trade area could spur sustainable growth: UN chief

Russia confirms participation in grain deal for at least 60 more days

Speaking at the daily press briefing, António Guterres welcomed Russia’s decision to continue its involvement in the Initiative, which has allowed the safe export of more than 30 million tonnes of grain and other foodstuffs from Ukraine, via its Black Sea ports, and also aims to ensure the flow of food and fertilizer from Russia,… Continue reading Russia confirms participation in grain deal for at least 60 more days

Guterres calls for end to digital divide, stressing ‘tremendous opportunities’ ahead

That’s the message from UN chief António Guterres ahead of World Telecommunication and Information Society Day on Thursday. Mr. Guterres insisted on the need to confront technology’s perils, including the amplification of economic inequalities, the proliferation of hate speech and disinformation, as well as the lack of governance and unchecked development of artificial intelligence, or… Continue reading Guterres calls for end to digital divide, stressing ‘tremendous opportunities’ ahead

Post-pandemic world economy still feeling COVID-19’s sting

Risks of a prolonged period of low growth stand, amid stubborn inflation, rising interest rates, and heightened uncertainties, in addition to the ever-worsening impact of climate change, the report found. Challenging development The current global economic outlook also presents an immediate challenge to delivering on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), said Li Junhua, Under-Secretary-General for… Continue reading Post-pandemic world economy still feeling COVID-19’s sting

Locust outbreak in Afghanistan threatens wheat harvest

The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) sounded the alarm on Wednesday after locusts were spotted in the country’s north and northeast. FAO said that a “full outbreak” this year could destroy up to 1.2 million metric tonnes of wheat, or a quarter of the total annual harvest. FAO Representative in Afghanistan Richard Trenchard said… Continue reading Locust outbreak in Afghanistan threatens wheat harvest

Stamping out corruption can give SDGs $3 trillion boost

“Corruption drains more than 5 per cent of the global GDP,” said Lachezara Stoeva. “Of the approximately $13 trillion in global public spending, up to 25 per cent is lost to corruption.” That translates into at least $3 trillion for public spending. Under the theme, Unleashing the transformative power of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16:… Continue reading Stamping out corruption can give SDGs $3 trillion boost

‘Transformative change’ needed to get Global Goals back on track, says UN deputy chief

Wednesday morning in the Chilean capital of Santiago, Ms. Mohammed met at the Palacio de La Moneda with President Gabriel Boric to discuss the acceleration of the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the country. The President delivered the National Strategy for the Implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The UN Resident Coordinator… Continue reading ‘Transformative change’ needed to get Global Goals back on track, says UN deputy chief

End ‘alarmist narratives’ on population growth and recognize women’s rights: UNFPA

In its 2023 State of World Population report, UNFPA said that while reaching the milestone of eight billion people on Earth was a reminder of “our unprecedented gains”, concerns over the number were “causing anxiety, and driving more governments to try to influence fertility rates.” However, the agency notes that thriving and inclusive societies can… Continue reading End ‘alarmist narratives’ on population growth and recognize women’s rights: UNFPA

UN predicts restrictions on women’s rights will worsen economic catastrophe

18 April 2023Economic Development The draconian restrictions on women’s ability to study and work have contributed to the calamitous socio-economic situation in Afghanistan, with devastating consequences for the population, according to a UN report released on Tuesday. The Afghanistan Socio-Economic Outlook 2023, released by the UN Development Programme (UNDP), provides an overview of the fallout… Continue reading UN predicts restrictions on women’s rights will worsen economic catastrophe

Zambia: UN experts concerned over delay in the country’s debt restructuring

17 April 2023Economic Development UN independent human rights experts on Monday said they were deeply concerned over delays in reaching an agreement on the restructuring of Zambia’s debt and its corresponding negative human rights impact on peoples’ lives there. “We are worried that despite positive reforms undertaken by the Government of Zambia, the delays in sovereign debt… Continue reading Zambia: UN experts concerned over delay in the country’s debt restructuring

Don’t let SDGs turn into ‘mirage of what might have been’: UN chief

17 April 2023Economic Development UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned on Monday that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is turning into a “mirage of what might have been,” at the opening of the Financing for Development Forum (FfD), taking place at UN Headquarters in New York. The Secretary-General pointed to reports showing that, since the… Continue reading Don’t let SDGs turn into ‘mirage of what might have been’: UN chief

Funding a better future for all: 5 things to know about the Financing for Development Forum

There are so many conflicts, humanitarian disasters, extreme weather events and economic upheavals taking place in the world, that a new word is being used to describe the current state of affairs: the “polycrisis”. The word appeared in 2022, a year that began with tentative hopes that the global economy would begin to recover from… Continue reading Funding a better future for all: 5 things to know about the Financing for Development Forum

Gender inequalities in food and agriculture are costing world $1 trillion: FAO

Over one third of the world’s working women are employed in agrifood systems, which include the production of food and non-food agricultural products, as well as related activities from food storage, transportation and processing to distribution. But in a new report, FAO says that gender inequalities such as less access for women to knowledge and… Continue reading Gender inequalities in food and agriculture are costing world $1 trillion: FAO

Lost decade looms for debt-ridden developing countries: UNCTAD

In a new report, UNCTAD projects that annual growth across large parts of the global economy will be below pre-pandemic levels in 2023. High interest rates combined with soaring debt levels will add to the “crushing” effect on developing countries over the coming years, to the tune of at least $800 billion. The UN body… Continue reading Lost decade looms for debt-ridden developing countries: UNCTAD

IMF lowers global economic growth outlook as ‘fog thickens’

Global inflation is also heading down, signalling that the tightening of monetary policy through major interest rate rises is bearing fruit, though more slowly than initially anticipated, said the IMF’s Director of Research, from 8.7 percent last year to seven percent this year, and 4.9 percent in 2024. Gradual recovery ‘remains on track’ Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas said… Continue reading IMF lowers global economic growth outlook as ‘fog thickens’

First Person: Passion to feed a healthier Gambia

8 April 2023Economic Development The majority of food consumed in The Gambia is imported, but a growing number of young entrepreneurs are starting food production companies, encouraged by the availability of UN-supported training. At only 24 years of age, Alhadgie Faal has built a successful small business, by turning family land in Kanuma, which is… Continue reading First Person: Passion to feed a healthier Gambia

‘Green industrial age’ can be sustainable development breakthrough

Amid growing food and energy crises stoked by Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, an uncertain global economic outlook, and the escalating impacts of climate change, the 2023 Financing for Sustainable Development Report: Financing Sustainable Transformations, says that “urgent, massive investment” is needed to accelerate positive transformation of the electricity supply industry, farming, transportation and construction. There are signs of… Continue reading ‘Green industrial age’ can be sustainable development breakthrough

Amid recent slowdown in global trade, ‘green goods’ are the winning ticket

23 March 2023Economic Development Global trade slowed down in the second half of 2022, but demand for environmentally friendly goods stayed strong, the UN Conference on Trade and Development, UNCTAD, said on Thursday.  According to UNCTAD’s latest Global Trade Update, trade in “green goods”, which use fewer resources and pollute less, grew by four per… Continue reading Amid recent slowdown in global trade, ‘green goods’ are the winning ticket

Embrace green tech revolution or risk falling behind, new UN report warns

“We are at the beginning of a technological revolution based on green technologies,” UNCTAD Secretary-General Rebeca Grynspan said. “This new wave of technological change will have a formidable impact on the global economy.” The 17 frontier technologies covered in UNCTAD’s Technology and Innovation Report 2023 have the potential to create market revenues of more than… Continue reading Embrace green tech revolution or risk falling behind, new UN report warns

Urgent investment needed to improve conditions for key workers: ILO

15 March 2023Economic Development Essential workers who kept families, societies and economies going while the world was on COVID lockdown, need better pay and conditions urgently, if countries are to future-proof themselves from the next global crisis, UN labour experts said on Wednesday. “In a number of countries, key sectors are facing labour shortages, because people… Continue reading Urgent investment needed to improve conditions for key workers: ILO

Think local, says new FAO report, pointing towards ‘hunger-free and healthy’ Europe, Central Asia

14 March 2023Economic Development Eight UN agencies on Tuesday published a new report aimed at helping countries address chronic food insecurity and nutrition crises across Europe and Central Asia, made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the war in Ukraine. The Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition in Europe and Central Asia 2022 report… Continue reading Think local, says new FAO report, pointing towards ‘hunger-free and healthy’ Europe, Central Asia

In Lebanon, UN deputy chief explores first-hand, challenges facing children and persons with special needs

She added: “We want to make sure that street children are an issue of the past. That’s what we will be working for day-in and day-out.” Recognizing the unprecedented economic hardship that people in Lebanon are facing and renewing the UN’s commitment to supporting Lebanon to respond to increasing needs, are two main issues addressed… Continue reading In Lebanon, UN deputy chief explores first-hand, challenges facing children and persons with special needs

First Person: ‘Nepal is ready for its next chapter’

There are currently 46 so-called Least Developed Countries (LDCs), a United Nations designation. They have been participating in an international conference in Doha, Qatar, focused on how best to support their development and future graduation from the LDC group. Subharsh Nepali (left) and colleagues (file) “In the 1970s, when Nepal was first included in the… Continue reading First Person: ‘Nepal is ready for its next chapter’

INTERVIEW: São Tomé and Príncipe readies for graduation day

11 March 2023Economic Development São Tomé and Príncipe is due to graduate from its current status as one of the world’s Least Developed Countries (LDCs), a journey that is testament to its economic successes, but is not without challenges, as Eric Overvest, the senior UN official in the country, tells UN News. There are currently… Continue reading INTERVIEW: São Tomé and Príncipe readies for graduation day

The LDC graduation pathway must not disrupt overall sustainable development, says UN deputy chief

She was speaking during the Fifth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5), in Doha, Qatar, where other participants stressed that graduation from LDC category must be sustainable and irreversible.  Speakers argued that the appeal for continued and innovative financing and support measures “has fallen on deaf ears”, as the LDC5 held the last… Continue reading The LDC graduation pathway must not disrupt overall sustainable development, says UN deputy chief

LDC5: World leaders back ‘blueprint for recovery, renewal, resilience’ in least developed countries

The Doha Political Declaration was adopted to a round of applause in the plenary hall of the Qatar National Convention Centre, where LDC5 has been under way since 5 March.  Ushering in new era of solidarity, and enormous socio-economic benefits for world’s Least Developed Countries, today’s action comes nearly one year after the DPoA was… Continue reading LDC5: World leaders back ‘blueprint for recovery, renewal, resilience’ in least developed countries

LDC5: Proposed online university sparks hope of bridging education gap in least developed countries

Notwithstanding progress in increasing enrolment rates for primary education, 16.2 per cent of children of primary school age were out of school in least developed countries (LDCs) in 2019 and almost half of children out of school worldwide are in those same countries, with girls, children with disabilities and other children in vulnerable situations disproportionately… Continue reading LDC5: Proposed online university sparks hope of bridging education gap in least developed countries

LDC5 spotlights contributions of women and girls in tech, despite tough odds and persistent barriers

At the stroke of noon on Wednesday, LDC5 held a moment of celebration near Maman, the iconic bronze and stainless-steel sculpture by the artist Louise Bourgeois that towers over the main atrium at the Qatar National Convention Centre. A celebration of motherhood, Ms. Bourgeois has said it echoes the strength of her own mother, with… Continue reading LDC5 spotlights contributions of women and girls in tech, despite tough odds and persistent barriers

LDC5: UN conference weighs building resilient agrifood systems in the face of risk and uncertainty

Among the many challenges they face, the world’s least developed countries (LDCs) remain hotspots of chronic and acute food insecurity, with an average prevalence of chronic undernourishment of 22.1 per cent, and in some countries, reaching more than 50 per cent.  Despite some progress since 2020, the overall situation has worsened over the past decade due… Continue reading LDC5: UN conference weighs building resilient agrifood systems in the face of risk and uncertainty

Close gaps to drive progress for next generations, youth delegates tell LDC5

7 March 2023Economic Development Dozens of youth delegates, representing some 226 million young people from 46 least developed countries (LDCs), took centre stage on Tuesday at a United Nations conference under way in Doha, Qatar, to spotlight a range of development issues affecting them and their countries.  Today, the world counts 1.8 billion young people… Continue reading Close gaps to drive progress for next generations, youth delegates tell LDC5

Jobs and pay for women, barely improved in 20 years: UN labour agency

6 March 2023Women In a new blow for equality in the 21st century workplace, UN labour experts said on Monday that women’s access to jobs, their employment conditions and a persistent pay gap, have barely improved worldwide in nearly two decades. The jobs gap for women is a “stubborn and damaging reality of the global labour market” but it… Continue reading Jobs and pay for women, barely improved in 20 years: UN labour agency

LDC5: UN conference calls for more inclusive and fair digital transformation in world’s least developed countries

On Monday at the Fifth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5), a series of roundtable discussions saw global leaders, ci confront two of the most fundamental hurdles facing LDCs: how to make better use of science, technology and innovation (STI), and how to promote structural transformations that can help overcome the real impediments… Continue reading LDC5: UN conference calls for more inclusive and fair digital transformation in world’s least developed countries

No more excuses; Guterres calls for ‘revolution of support’ to aid world’s least developed countries

Three years after the world began its epic struggle against COVID-19, the least developed countries (LDCs) – already grappling with severe structural impediments to sustainable development and highly vulnerable to economic and environmental shocks – have found themselves stranded amid a rising tide of crisis, uncertainty, climate chaos and deep global injustice.  “Systems are stretched… Continue reading No more excuses; Guterres calls for ‘revolution of support’ to aid world’s least developed countries

Changing lives in The Gambia: A UN Resident Coordinator Blog

When my mandate began, in 2018, it was not long after the end of the dictatorship [The two-decade rule of Yahya Jammeh]. The new Government was already embracing several reforms simultaneously, reviewing the constitution, the judiciary, and the security sector, and the UN had allocated funds for peacebuilding. Women working in a rice field, The… Continue reading Changing lives in The Gambia: A UN Resident Coordinator Blog

‘The time has come to do justice for the least developed countries,’ says UN chief Guterres

“Countries with the least need support the most. And you need it now. You represent one in eight people on earth. But your countries are trapped in vicious cycles that make development difficult, if not impossible,” Mr. Guterres told the Summit of Least Developed Countries (LDCs), in Doha, Qatar Today’s Summit of Heads of State… Continue reading ‘The time has come to do justice for the least developed countries,’ says UN chief Guterres

5 things you need to know the world’s least developed countries

3 March 2023Economic Development Three years after the world began to shut down as COVID-19 took hold, the UN and other partners will gather in Doha, Qatar, to deliver a historic new compact to support the countries whose vulnerabilities the pandemic most exposed. The conference of Least Developed Countries or LDCs takes place every 10… Continue reading 5 things you need to know the world’s least developed countries

Patent filings hit a record high in 2022, UN agency reveals

28 February 2023Economic Development International demand for patents hit a record high last year, as innovators in China, the United States, Japan, the Republic of Korea and Germany, sought to protect their inventions, said the UN agency that polices the process worldwide, on Tuesday. According to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), Chinese telecoms giant Huawei remained by… Continue reading Patent filings hit a record high in 2022, UN agency reveals

First Person: Hatching a plan for success in rural Gambia

Guidom Sabally’s high school education was cut short because his family could no longer afford school fees. For many years, he struggled to find work as an unskilled labourer. Now in his 40s, Mr. Sabally was able to take up the opportunity of free technical training, provided by a UN-led training programme, in 2018; having… Continue reading First Person: Hatching a plan for success in rural Gambia

On World Day of Social Justice, deeper dialogue across ‘real economy’ can drive progress, UN deputy chief says

“We must develop fairer, more balanced policies that generate the political buy-in to drive change,” Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed said in a video message. “What is also needed is a deeper social dialogue with actors across the real economy.” The day’s theme focuses on strengthening global solidarity and re-building trust in government by overcoming barriers… Continue reading On World Day of Social Justice, deeper dialogue across ‘real economy’ can drive progress, UN deputy chief says

Guterres calls for G20 to agree $500 billion annual stimulus for sustainable development

So far, the global financial system has failed to effectively cushion the impacts of current crises impacting the Global South the most: the COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine and the ongoing climate emergency. “Today’s poly-crises are compounding shocks on developing countries – in large part because of an unfair global financial system that is short-term, crisis-prone,… Continue reading Guterres calls for G20 to agree $500 billion annual stimulus for sustainable development

World Bank chief Malpass announces early departure

16 February 2023Economic Development The World Bank is poised to get a new president in 2023, as David Malpass announced his departure on Wednesday. David Malpass, a former senior United States’ Treasury official nominated by then President Donald Trump, served as chief of World Bank Group (WBG) since 2019. In a post on the social… Continue reading World Bank chief Malpass announces early departure

Exhibition showcases millets as ‘smart food’, rich in heritage and full of potential

Launched by India’s mission to the UN, during the International Year of Millets, the exhibition showcases different kinds of millets grown in India, their nutritional value and various health benefits. Millets encompass a diverse group of nutritious cereals including pearl, proso, foxtail, barnyard, kodo, browntop, finger and Guinea millets, as well as fonio, sorghum and teff.  Millet-based refreshments… Continue reading Exhibition showcases millets as ‘smart food’, rich in heritage and full of potential

Air travel set to soar to pre-pandemic levels in 2023: UN aviation agency

8 February 2023Economic Development Air passenger demand in 2023 will rapidly recover to pre-pandemic levels on most routes, the UN aviation agency said on Wednesday. “Assuring the safe, secure, and sustainable recovery of air services will be key to restoring aviation’s ability to act as a catalyst for sustainable development at the local, national, and… Continue reading Air travel set to soar to pre-pandemic levels in 2023: UN aviation agency

UN ‘blueprint’ to protect least developed nations amid global slowdown

The Doha Programme of Action, as it’s formally known, has been designed as a roadmap up to 2031, to foster strengthened commitments between the least developed countries and their development partners. “The world is reeling under the cascading impacts of complex, interlocking challenges and structural limitations and constrained fiscal capabilities make least developed countries the… Continue reading UN ‘blueprint’ to protect least developed nations amid global slowdown

‘Put people first’ in drive to realize Sustainable Development Goals

“Putting people first means we must create opportunities for young people to accumulate knowledge and skills relevant for the labour market through education, training, and early work experience,” Lachezara Stoeva said. The current dim projections for global economic growth simply require it. Amid multiple global interconnected crises, advancing efforts to achieve the 2030 Agenda for… Continue reading ‘Put people first’ in drive to realize Sustainable Development Goals

Global growth will be weak in 2023 before rebounding next year: IMF

The IMF estimates growth at 2.9 per cent this year, falling from 3.4 per cent in 2022 and reaching 3.1 per cent in 2024.  This represents a slight adjustment, 0.2 percentage points, from its World Economic Outlook (WEO)  forecast in October.   Possible ‘turning point’  “Growth will remain weak by historical standards, as the fight against… Continue reading Global growth will be weak in 2023 before rebounding next year: IMF

Heat-resistant crops, ‘green’ infrastructure, can prepare Near East and North Africa to better tackle droughts – UN agency

15 June 2018Economic Development Countries in the Near-East and North Africa, where chronic water shortages are sure to worsen due to climate change, must take pro-active steps to become more resilient against droughts, the United Nations agriculture agency said on Friday. Even though drought is a familiar phenomenon in the region, over the past four… Continue reading Heat-resistant crops, ‘green’ infrastructure, can prepare Near East and North Africa to better tackle droughts – UN agency

Much more than a ‘lifeline’ for millions of households, remittances can spur global growth, says UN agency

15 June 2018Economic Development Not only are remittances a “critical lifeline” for millions globally, the direct benefits of money sent home by migrant workers touch the lives of one in every seven persons on the planet – over one billion people, the United Nations rural development agency has said. “Remittances are vital for millions of… Continue reading Much more than a ‘lifeline’ for millions of households, remittances can spur global growth, says UN agency

Central Asia bloc has important role in ‘peace, stability and prosperity’ beyond region, says Deputy UN chief

10 June 2018Economic Development United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed addressed the Heads of State summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) on Sunday, stressing that the organization’s impact in the political, economic and security realm, extends well beyond the large Eurasian region that its members represent. Noting that the SCO represents “more than half of… Continue reading Central Asia bloc has important role in ‘peace, stability and prosperity’ beyond region, says Deputy UN chief

Promoting decent work ‘daily challenge’ in fragile countries, UN Labour Summit told

“Creating income- and wealth-generating jobs is essential in order to consolidate peace and reinforce resilience” in the country, CAR’s President, Faustin Archange Touadéra, said in a keynote address during the World of Work Summit convened in Geneva by the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Entitled ‘Employment and Decent Work for Peace and Resilience,’ this year’s Summit… Continue reading Promoting decent work ‘daily challenge’ in fragile countries, UN Labour Summit told

Uncertainty threatens to hamper investment in developing countries: new UN report

6 June 2018Economic Development Financial uncertainty caused by “significant risks” to global trade, is responsible for a sharp fall in international investment flows which could hurt developing countries the most, according to a new UN report, released on Wednesday. UNCTAD, the UN Conference on Trade and Development, reports that foreign direct investment – or FDI… Continue reading Uncertainty threatens to hamper investment in developing countries: new UN report

Universal access to modern energy is ‘catalyst of inclusivity’ – deputy UN chief

“To be strong partners of countries as they deliver the 2030 Agenda – across all SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) – the United Nations too must change,” Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General, said Wednesday at a high-level panel onTransformational Energy Access in LDCs, organized in Geneva by the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). “But together, the United Nations development system offers… Continue reading Universal access to modern energy is ‘catalyst of inclusivity’ – deputy UN chief

End the ‘harmful narrative’; migration is a net-gain for Africa, finds UN report

31 May 2018Economic Development The large-scale migration of people within Africa tends to boost growth and lifts the continent’s whole economy, a new United Nations report has said, urging the world to dispel misconceptions and “harmful narratives” targeting migration. Cross-border movement offers “a chance for a better life, with the social and economic benefits extending… Continue reading End the ‘harmful narrative’; migration is a net-gain for Africa, finds UN report

Spirit of compromise needed to combat workplace ‘brutalism’ – UN labour agency

29 May 2018Economic Development The head of the United Nations labour agency has called for a new spirit of cooperation and consensus between workers, employers and Governments, to end what he called the “new brutalism” of sexual harassment and violence in the workplace. Addressing the International Labour Conference on Monday, Guy Ryder, the Director-General of… Continue reading Spirit of compromise needed to combat workplace ‘brutalism’ – UN labour agency

HIV/AIDS still impacting work and costing billions in lost earnings – new UN agency report

24 May 2018Health Outlining the economic and social toll HIV and AIDS continues to take on workers around the world, the International Labour Organization (ILO) called on Thursday for an “urgent effort” to improve treatment, step up testing and ensure healthier and more productive workplaces. Prepared in collaboration with the UN agency dedicated to tackling… Continue reading HIV/AIDS still impacting work and costing billions in lost earnings – new UN agency report

UN development official urges greater international support for Zimbabwe

Bishow Parajuli, UN Resident Coordinator and Resident Representative for the UN Development Programme (UNDP), said now is the time to support the southern African nation. “I think the international community should be very open, the UN should be very open, to engage and partner with – and support Zimbabwe – to come out of some… Continue reading UN development official urges greater international support for Zimbabwe

Not so fast on fracking, UN agency tells developing countries

24 May 2018Economic Development The hydraulic extraction of natural gas, commonly known as fracking, produces cleaner energy than oil and coal, but it is not necessarily in the best interests of the world’s poorest countries, UN development experts said on Thursday. A new report by UNCTAD, the UN Conference on Trade and Development, describes natural… Continue reading Not so fast on fracking, UN agency tells developing countries

New health board aims to break ‘cycle of panic and neglect’ on pandemics

24 May 2018Economic Development A group of international experts has been tasked with helping the planet to better prepare for outbreaks, pandemics and other emergencies that have an impact on health. The Global Preparedness Monitoring Board (GPMB) brings together political leaders, heads of United Nations agencies and health experts to strengthen global health security through… Continue reading New health board aims to break ‘cycle of panic and neglect’ on pandemics

Transforming the world requires input from all society: UN deputy chief

23 May 2018SDGs International efforts to create a world where no one is left behind will only become a reality if all sectors in society participate, the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General told ambassadors in New York on Wednesday. Amina Mohammed was addressing a special meeting of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the UN forum… Continue reading Transforming the world requires input from all society: UN deputy chief

Economic growth ‘exceeds expectations’ but trade tensions are rising: UN report

17 May 2018Economic Development Global economic growth is exceeding expectations this year but heightened geopolitical tension and uncertainty over international trade could thwart progress, according to a new United Nations report. The global Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is due to expand by more than 3 per cent this year and next, according to the UN World Economic Situation… Continue reading Economic growth ‘exceeds expectations’ but trade tensions are rising: UN report

Around 2.5 billion more people will be living in cities by 2050, projects new UN report

16 May 2018Economic Development By 2050, two out of every three people are likely to be living in cities or other urban centres, according to a new United Nations report, highlighting the need for more sustainable urban planning and public services. Owing to both demographic shifts and overall population growth, that means that around 2.5… Continue reading Around 2.5 billion more people will be living in cities by 2050, projects new UN report

Jobs in the green economy will ‘more than offset’ losses in traditional industry by 2030 – UN labour agency

The International Labour Organization (ILO) made the announcement at the launch of its annual flagship report on the state of the global job market. Its forecast that 24 million new posts “will be created globally by 2030”, contains the caveat that “the right policies to promote a greener economy” must also be in place for… Continue reading Jobs in the green economy will ‘more than offset’ losses in traditional industry by 2030 – UN labour agency

‘Gender-sensitive’ trade policies help empower East African women

9 May 2018Women Trade and employment laws which give women greater access to the economy across East Africa, can pave the way for more inclusive development and prosperity, according to a new report from the United Nations trade body. Crediting improved education, employment and other key areas, the United Nations Conference for Trade and Development… Continue reading ‘Gender-sensitive’ trade policies help empower East African women

In Cuba, UN chief stresses Latin America’s courageous ‘development vision’

8 May 2018Economic Development The United Nations chief on Tuesday highlighted the central role he hopes Latin America and the Caribbean region will play in ensuring “fair globalization” that leaves no one behind. Addressing a session of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), which opened in Cuba on Monday, Secretary-General António… Continue reading In Cuba, UN chief stresses Latin America’s courageous ‘development vision’

‘Robust’ economic growth in Asia-Pacific last year and ‘promising’ prospects ahead – UN report

7 May 2018Economic Development Economies in the Asia-Pacific region registered robust growth in 2017 and prospects for this year look promising, the United Nations development arm in the region said, urging countries to take advantage of positive conditions and address underlying vulnerabilities. Recent strong growth can also provide resources critical to realizing the ambitious 2030… Continue reading ‘Robust’ economic growth in Asia-Pacific last year and ‘promising’ prospects ahead – UN report

Can science and technology really help solve global problems? A UN forum debates vital question

1 May 2018Economic Development Science and technology offer part of the solution to climate change, inequality and other global issues, a United Nations official said on Tuesday, spotlighting the enormous potential these fields hold for achieving humanity’s common goal, of a poverty and hunger-free world by 2030. “New advances in science and technology hold immense promises… Continue reading Can science and technology really help solve global problems? A UN forum debates vital question

Nearly two-thirds of global workforce in the ‘informal’ economy – UN study

30 April 2018Economic Development More than 61 per cent of the world’s employed population – two billion people – earn their livelihoods in the informal sector, the United Nations labour agency said on Monday, stressing that a transition to the formal economy is critical to ensure rights’ protection and decent working conditions. “The high incidence… Continue reading Nearly two-thirds of global workforce in the ‘informal’ economy – UN study

Make mine Darjeeling: Locally identified foods promote sustainable development, UN study finds

26 April 2018Economic Development Not just any peppers, but white Penja peppers, grown in volcanic soil in the Cameroon; not just any cabbage, but Futog cabbage, cultivated alongside the Danube in Serbia. The rising number of products with a specific and certified geographic origin, it turns out, not only have cachet among gourmands: they are also providing… Continue reading Make mine Darjeeling: Locally identified foods promote sustainable development, UN study finds

At development financing forum, top UN officials urge breakaway from ‘short-termism’

“I will count on world leaders and all of you to invest in a sustainable and prosperous future for all,” Secretary-General António Guterres said in his video message to the opening of the financing for development follow-up forum in New York. The forum, organized by the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), will discuss the… Continue reading At development financing forum, top UN officials urge breakaway from ‘short-termism’

A bio-based, reuse economy can feed the world and save the planet – UN agency

20 April 2018Economic Development Transforming pineapple skins into product packaging or using potato peels for fuel may sound far-fetched, but such innovations are gaining traction as it becomes clear that an economy based on cultivation and use of biomass can help tackle pollution and climate change, the United Nations agriculture agency said on Friday. A sustainable… Continue reading A bio-based, reuse economy can feed the world and save the planet – UN agency

UN-sponsored group tightens controls on spread of crop-attacking pests

18 April 2018Economic Development With an estimated $220 billion of the global harvest lost to plant pests each year, the agency charged with fighting this scourge has adopted new standards and measures to safeguard  internationally traded  agricultural and forestry products. Preventing the introduction of plant diseases and pests to new environments is  “challenging work with… Continue reading UN-sponsored group tightens controls on spread of crop-attacking pests

Upswing in global growth won’t last forever; IMF says world must prepare now for leaner times ahead

“Global growth is projected to soften beyond the next couple of years,” said the report, explaining that: “Once their output gaps close, most advanced economies are poised to return to potential growth rates well below pre-crisis averages – held back by aging populations and lackluster productivity.” Looking at the largest economies, the World Economic Outlook… Continue reading Upswing in global growth won’t last forever; IMF says world must prepare now for leaner times ahead

Global anxiety deepens over online data and privacy protection – UN agency

16 April 2018Economic Development Internet users worldwide are becoming more worried about their privacy online and many question the protections offered by Internet and social media companies, a new United Nations survey has found. This waning of confidence could imperil the spread of online shopping even as newcomers to the Internet may be especially vulnerable… Continue reading Global anxiety deepens over online data and privacy protection – UN agency

Short-sighted investment endangers development progress for hundreds of millions of people – UN report

13 April 2018Economic Development While a moderate upturn in the world economy led to more development financing in 2017, a new United Nations report out Friday revealed that the vast majority of investment is still short-term oriented, putting global commitments to create sustainable economies at risk. “The world has the resources to deliver, but they are not… Continue reading Short-sighted investment endangers development progress for hundreds of millions of people – UN report

At Asian forum, UN chief calls for more equitable globalization, urgent action on climate change

10 April 2018Economic Development The world must act to spread the benefits of globalization more fairly while avoiding the perils of protectionism, the United Nations chief said on Tuesday. “I am deeply convinced that globalization is irreversible,” UN Secretary-General António Guterres told an Asian forum that brought political, business and civil society leaders together in… Continue reading At Asian forum, UN chief calls for more equitable globalization, urgent action on climate change

UN population forum urged to examine ways to protect people on the move, make cities work better

9 April 2018Economic Development A great migration of humanity into cities is under way, and with millions drawn to urban areas for the promise of a better life, the main United Nations forum on population opened its annual session on Monday examining ways to protect people on the move and help create cities that can… Continue reading UN population forum urged to examine ways to protect people on the move, make cities work better

Global growth forecast to slow to 1.9% in 2023, warn UN economists

This will be one of the lowest growth rates in recent decades, apart from during the 2007-8 financial crisis and the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. “In most countries we expect that private consumption and investment will weaken due to incomes and higher income rates”, said Ingo Pitterle, Senior Economist at the UN Department of… Continue reading Global growth forecast to slow to 1.9% in 2023, warn UN economists

Candlenuts, chilli and chickens: Transforming Indonesia’s rural economy

Wilfridus Ngala, the mayor of Inegena, a village nestled amidst the central hills of Ngada district, on Flores Island, had a vision – to turn his community of 1,100 people, most of them subsistence farmers, into an agricultural powerhouse with its own food processing industry and exports. Mayor Ngala’s idea might sound far-fetched but, a… Continue reading Candlenuts, chilli and chickens: Transforming Indonesia’s rural economy

Around 2 million facing food insecurity across Lebanon

Lebanon’s first ever Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) Acute Food Insecurity Analysis predicts that the situation will deteriorate between January and April this year, with 2.26 million people – 1.46 million Lebanese residents and around 800,000 refugees – expected to be in the “crisis” phase or worse, needing urgent assistance. The results of the analysis were… Continue reading Around 2 million facing food insecurity across Lebanon

Economic slowdown may force workers into ‘lower quality’ jobs

According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), global employment is set to grow by just one per cent in 2023, which is less than half last year’s level. The number of people unemployed around the world is also expected to rise slightly, to 208 million. This corresponds to a global unemployment rate of 5.8 per… Continue reading Economic slowdown may force workers into ‘lower quality’ jobs

World Bank: sharp, long-lasting slowdown to hit developing countries hard

Globally, growth continues to slow sharply due to rising inflation and interest rates, reduced investment, and supply disruptions caused by Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Any new adverse development could further push the global economy into recession, said the World Bank. This includes higher-than-expected inflation rates, abrupt rises in interest rates to contain it, a… Continue reading World Bank: sharp, long-lasting slowdown to hit developing countries hard

Sunshine, sea, and sustainable tourism: Indonesian women entrepreneurs adapt to a changing world

As the sun sets over the Celebes sea, and its orange glow turns the horizon gold, a couple of dozen tourists are on the pier at Budo, a village of 2400 perched on the ocean, 25 kilometres northeast of the regional capital Manado. They snap photos and marvel at the view; a woman visiting from… Continue reading Sunshine, sea, and sustainable tourism: Indonesian women entrepreneurs adapt to a changing world

Flexible work arrangements, a benefit to all – ILO report

Issues surrounding working hours and conditions are “at the heart of most labour market reforms and evolutions taking place in the world today”, Branch Chief Philippe Marcadent said in the foreword to ILO’s Working Time and Work-Life Balance Around the World. “The number of hours worked, the way in which they are organized, and the… Continue reading Flexible work arrangements, a benefit to all – ILO report

Arab region registers world’s highest unemployment rate, UN survey finds

30 December 2022Economic Development According to the latest UN survey, released on Friday, the Arab region registered a 12 per cent unemployment rate in 2022, the highest in the world. However, the Survey of Economic and Social Developments in the Arab Region, published by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) projects… Continue reading Arab region registers world’s highest unemployment rate, UN survey finds

Global trade growth turns negative after record year: UNCTAD

That’s according to UN trade and development agency, UNCTAD, whose analysts said that global growth “turned negative” during the second half of 2022. The UN agency said that trade in goods and services is expected to reach $25 trillion and $7 trillion respectively, by the end of the year. The downturn began in the third… Continue reading Global trade growth turns negative after record year: UNCTAD

Developing countries face ‘impossible trade-off’ on debt: UNCTAD chief

Speaking in Geneva, Rebeca Grynspan said that between 70 and 85 per cent of the debt that emerging and low-income countries are responsible for, is in a foreign currency. This has left them highly vulnerable to the kind of large currency shocks that hit public spending – precisely at a time when populations need financial support… Continue reading Developing countries face ‘impossible trade-off’ on debt: UNCTAD chief

In Africa, UN chief sees continent full of ‘hope and potential’

“When I see Africa, I see hope and potential”, he told journalists at a press stakeout in Addis Ababa. “I see countries working together, including here at the AU, to foster peace and development.” Focusing on the huge untapped potential of African youth, he said their “limitless energy” and “new ways of thinking” could provide… Continue reading In Africa, UN chief sees continent full of ‘hope and potential’

Ports, shipping need to go green to resist future global crises: UNCTAD

29 November 2022Economic Development The entire shipping industry must invest urgently in sustainability if it is to withstand future shocks and help prevent another global cost-of-living crisis linked to supply chain disruption, UN trade and development experts UNCTAD said on Tuesday. “Ships carry over 80 per cent of the goods traded globally, with the percentage even… Continue reading Ports, shipping need to go green to resist future global crises: UNCTAD

‘Join forces’ for peaceful, prosperous continent, urges UN chief on Africa Industrialization Day

In his message commemorating the Day, Secretary-General António Guterres warned that countries across Africa are facing “a perfect storm”.  He cited armed conflicts; rising food and energy insecurity; “skyrocketing” inflation and debt; shrinking fiscal space; and mounting climate catastrophes. Yet despite these challenges, the top UN official reminded that Africa includes some of the world’s fastest growing… Continue reading ‘Join forces’ for peaceful, prosperous continent, urges UN chief on Africa Industrialization Day

‘Bridges across digital divides’ needed to boost development, Guterres tells G20 

16 November 2022SDGs With the right national policies, digital technology can give “an unprecedented boost to sustainable development”, particularly for the poorest countries, the UN chief told the G20 Summit in Bali, Indonesia, on Wednesday.  “This calls for more connectivity; and less digital fragmentation. More bridges across digital divides; and fewer barriers. Greater autonomy for… Continue reading ‘Bridges across digital divides’ needed to boost development, Guterres tells G20 

COP27: ‘Zero tolerance for greenwashing’, Guterres says as new report cracks down on empty net-zero pledges

The report slams greenwashing – misleading the public to believe that a company or entity is doing more to protect the environment than it is – and weak net-zero pledges and provides a roadmap to bring integrity to net-zero commitments by industry, financial institutions, cities and regions and to support a global, equitable transition to… Continue reading COP27: ‘Zero tolerance for greenwashing’, Guterres says as new report cracks down on empty net-zero pledges

Ukraine: UN-led Grain Initiative helps anchor food supply, chart way out of crisis

And with the deadline looming, it also underlines why it’s critical to renew the initiative next month, said UNCTAD. Thanks to the initiative agreed in July by Ukraine, Russia and Türkiye, and led by UN chief António Guterres, port activity in Ukraine is picking up, and large shipments of grain are reaching world markets. The deal also… Continue reading Ukraine: UN-led Grain Initiative helps anchor food supply, chart way out of crisis

Business leaders deliver bold solutions to unlock long-term investment in SDGs

The Fourth Annual Meeting of the Global Investors for Sustainable Development (GISD) Alliance, is focused on supporting developing countries on the road to meeting the SDGs, and it took place at UN Headquarters in New York amid a worsening global economic outlook brought on by war in Ukraine, climate change, and COVID-19 – all of which is… Continue reading Business leaders deliver bold solutions to unlock long-term investment in SDGs

World Cotton Day focuses on the fibre’s role in weaving socio-economic development

7 October 2022Economic Development Cotton is a constant thread in our lives, from field to fabric, the UN agriculture agency, FAO, upheld on Friday, World Cotton Day, drawing attention to the natural fibre’s contribution in weaving socio-economic development and championing its advancement in sustainable livelihoods. An estimated 100 million family farmers across 80 countries directly… Continue reading World Cotton Day focuses on the fibre’s role in weaving socio-economic development

WTO anticipates sharp slowdown in world trade growth in 2023

The UN partner agency has cautioned against imposing trade restrictions which would ultimately result in slower growth and lower living standards.  Global merchandise trade volume is estimated to grow 3.5 per cent in 2022, or slightly better than the 3.0 per cent anticipated in April.    However, volume will slow to 1 per cent next… Continue reading WTO anticipates sharp slowdown in world trade growth in 2023

Ten years of Afghan economic growth, reversed in just 12 months: UNDP

It says that the already-declining regular economy, as opposed to the black market, lost nearly $5 billion after August 2021 and is reversing “in 12 months what had taken 10 years to accumulate.” Soaring prices  The cost of a basket of essentials needed to avoid food poverty has meanwhile risen 35 percent, forcing poorer households… Continue reading Ten years of Afghan economic growth, reversed in just 12 months: UNDP

Policy mistakes could trigger worse recession than 2007 crisis: UNCTAD

“There is still time to step back from the edge of recession,” said UNCTAD chief Rebeca Grynspan. ‘Political will’ “This is a matter of policy choices and political will,” she added, noting that the current course of action is hurting the most vulnerable. UNCTAD is warning that the policy-induced global recession could be worse than… Continue reading Policy mistakes could trigger worse recession than 2007 crisis: UNCTAD

Empty shelves and rising prices linked to Ukraine crisis push Tunisians to the brink

“There is no sugar, I have to take a taxi very far away to buy one kilogramme of sugar,” one woman explains in frustration, at a market in Kairouan, a town several hours drive south of the capital, Tunis. “The prices are going up! Poor people can no longer afford anything. It is like the… Continue reading Empty shelves and rising prices linked to Ukraine crisis push Tunisians to the brink

Yemen: Put the people first, Guterres urges, with extended and expanded truce

In a statement on Friday, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said it was time for Government forces and their allies, together with Houthi rebels and their international backers, to “choose peace for good.” The hiatus since 2 April, has been twice renewed, providing the longest period of relative calm since the beginning of the intensified conflict,… Continue reading Yemen: Put the people first, Guterres urges, with extended and expanded truce

World Maritime Day showcases technology for ‘greener’ shipping

This year’s theme – ‘New technologies for greener shipping’ – promotes innovation and solutions that support a transition in the sector. Maritime transport represents more than 80 per cent of global trade, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said in his message for the Day. Meanwhile, the war in Ukraine –and the Black Sea Grain Initiative –… Continue reading World Maritime Day showcases technology for ‘greener’ shipping

From the Field: Outreach across the Horn of Africa

8 August 2022Peace and Security In July, a UN human rights officer embarked on an outreach visit to the Horn of Africa’s Sool and Sanaag regions, a seven-day round-trip of more than 1,600 kilometres by road. UNSOM Human Rights Officer, Sia Mawalla (left), and leader of a visiting UN team, poses for a photo with… Continue reading From the Field: Outreach across the Horn of Africa

UN urges investment in clean, sustainable tourism, as numbers bounce back

International tourism is showing strong signs of recovery, with tourist numbers rising to 57 per cent of pre-pandemic levels. On World Tourism Day, marked on Tuesday, the UN is calling for a major global rethink of the sector, to ensure that tourism is sustainable, and benefits local communities. The UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) released… Continue reading UN urges investment in clean, sustainable tourism, as numbers bounce back

400 million new green and digital sector jobs, will pave way to ‘rebalance societies’

According to António Guterres, the Global Accelerator on Jobs and Social Protection for Just Transitions aims to rebalance societies by putting decent jobs and social protection at the centre of sustainable development. “The path of inaction leads to economic collapse and climate catastrophe, widening inequalities and escalating social unrest”, which could leave “billions trapped in… Continue reading 400 million new green and digital sector jobs, will pave way to ‘rebalance societies’

Barbados Prime Minister Motley calls for overhaul of unfair, outdated global finance system

During her speech, Ms. Mottley spoke extensively about the need to reform the ageing global financial architecture to better reflect today’s realities, for instance making it easier for climate-stricken countries to access capital. Indeed, the Bretton Woods Agreement that gave rise to the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) “no longer serve the… Continue reading Barbados Prime Minister Motley calls for overhaul of unfair, outdated global finance system

UN spotlights transformational potential of family farming for world food supply

A Global Forum highlighting the UN’s Decade of Family Farming (UNDFF) got underway on Monday, aimed at identifying priority policies to boost support for family farmers and agricultural development worldwide. The UNDFF runs through the end of 2028, and the Forum is being convened by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the International… Continue reading UN spotlights transformational potential of family farming for world food supply

Closing gender pay gaps is more important than ever 

On average, women globally are paid about 20 per cent less than men, the International Labour (ILO) Organization said on Saturday, International Equal Pay Day. While individual characteristics such as education, working time, occupational segregation, skills, or experience explain part of the gender pay gap, ILO says that a large part is due to discrimination… Continue reading Closing gender pay gaps is more important than ever 

Human rights: Inflation threatens everyone’s right to development

Rising global inflation is expected to hit emerging and developing economies particularly hard this year, adding to a “confluence of crises” that threatens us all, the UN’s acting human rights chief has warned. Addressing the Human Rights Council in Geneva on Thursday, Nada Al- Nashif cited International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts that advanced economies should brace themselves… Continue reading Human rights: Inflation threatens everyone’s right to development

Human development falling behind in ninety per cent of countries: UN report

The 2021/22 Human Development Report (HDR) – which is entitled “Uncertain Times, Unsettled Lives: Shaping our Future in a Transforming World” – paints a picture of a global society lurching from crisis to crisis, and which risks heading towards increasing deprivation and injustice. Heading the list of events causing major global disruption are the COVID-19… Continue reading Human development falling behind in ninety per cent of countries: UN report

UN trade body calls for halting cryptocurrency rise in developing countries

Although private digital currencies have rewarded some individuals and institutions, they are an unstable financial asset that can bring social risks and costs, the agency warned.  UNCTAD said their benefits to some are overshadowed by the threats they pose to financial stability, domestic resource mobilization, and the security of monetary systems.  Rise of crypto  Cryptocurrencies… Continue reading UN trade body calls for halting cryptocurrency rise in developing countries

First Person: The honey business owner creating a buzz in northern Uganda

Sam Aderubo started his company, Honey Pride, in Arua, northern Uganda, in order to make a positive impact on his community. With support from the UN, the business is taking off, providing work for hundreds of local beekeepers, many of whom are marginalized women and youth. “I used to work in an office, and people… Continue reading First Person: The honey business owner creating a buzz in northern Uganda

UNFPA global innovation awards: 10 projects that will change lives of women and girls

The challenge was financed by UNFPA’s Equalizer Accelerator Fund, and implemented in cooperation with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), and the International Trade Centre. Entrants were given the incentive of a cash prize which would allow them to expand their ideas from the test stage, to full production, for the potential… Continue reading UNFPA global innovation awards: 10 projects that will change lives of women and girls

Unprecedented global challenges are ‘not insurmountable’ – UN chief

Nearly a year ago, the UN chief released his report, Our Common Agenda (OCA), a blueprint for global cooperation moving forward, and reinvigorated multilateralism. On Thursday, he updated the General Assembly on progress made so far, saying the need for the report’s proposals “has only increased.” “In addition to the triple planetary crisis of climate… Continue reading Unprecedented global challenges are ‘not insurmountable’ – UN chief

INTERVIEW: Accessible finance is key to realizing Uganda’s potential

Northern Uganda suffers from a development gap with the rest of the country, with high rates of poverty and unemployment. UN News spoke to Dmitry Pozhidaev, head of the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) office in Uganda, to find out what the agency is doing to improve funding access to individuals and businesses, and put… Continue reading INTERVIEW: Accessible finance is key to realizing Uganda’s potential

First Person: Surviving Bali’s COVID tourism crash

Dekha Dewandana ran a thriving ‘homestay’ tourism property in Bali, and received UN-supported training which has helped him to maintain a high standard of hospitality. When COVID-19 hit Indonesia, his business was pushed to the verge of collapse and, after a bruising two-year period, it’s now slowly recovering. “When my parents passed away, I followed… Continue reading First Person: Surviving Bali’s COVID tourism crash

Global economy: Outlook worsens as global recession looms – IMF

Still reeling from the COVID pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the global economy is facing an increasingly murky and uncertain outlook, according to the latest report released on Tuesday by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The World Economic Outlook Update July 2022: Gloomy and More Uncertain, highlights the significant consequences of the stalling of… Continue reading Global economy: Outlook worsens as global recession looms – IMF

UN summit galvanizes action for development agendas in Africa

Despite being “rich with human and natural resources and enormous untapped economic and social potential,” General Assembly President Abdulla Shahid told the high-level The Africa We Want dialogue that the continent “still faces challenges” in realizing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Hard-won struggles Africa has undergone a dramatic transformation since the end of the colonial… Continue reading UN summit galvanizes action for development agendas in Africa

Cost of living crisis hits poorest the hardest, warns UNCTAD

Billions of people are facing the greatest cost of living crisis in a generation due to rising food and energy prices amid rapid inflation and increasing debt, leaving the most vulnerable consumers in a dire situation, said the UN trade and development body, UNCTAD on Tuesday. UNCTAD’s analysis shows that a 10 per cent increase in… Continue reading Cost of living crisis hits poorest the hardest, warns UNCTAD

A safe space for Venezuela’s indigenous women

Venezuela’s rural, remote, indigenous communities have been particularly affected by COVID-19 and the country’s socio-economic crisis; community gardens help Wayúu women from Rio Negro to make ends meet, and provide a haven from violence. Venezuela has suffered a widespread decline in public services, such as electricity, domestic gas supplies, and public transportation in recent years.… Continue reading A safe space for Venezuela’s indigenous women

World population to reach 8 billion this year, as growth rate slows

The latest UN projections suggest that the world’s population could grow to around 8.5 billion in 2030 and 9.7 billion in 2050, before reaching a peak of around 10.4 billion people during the 2080s. The population is expected to remain at that level until 2100.  Slowest growth rate since 1950s However, the annual World Population… Continue reading World population to reach 8 billion this year, as growth rate slows

All rural workers deserve social protection coverage: New ILO report

Social protection for rural workers “remains a dream”, according to a report launched in Geneva on Thursday by the Bureau for Workers’ Activities (ACTRAV), part of the UN’s International Labour Organization (ILO). This is of particular concern for those in precarious work conditions, including informal, casual, temporary and subcontracted workers and day labourers who form… Continue reading All rural workers deserve social protection coverage: New ILO report

Sri Lanka’s misery should be warning to us all on global food, fuel and finance crisis: UNDP

“We’re witnessing a tragic series of events that are unfolding in Sri Lanka right now that should be a warning to anyone who thinks that, you know, it is up to countries themselves to figure out how to deal with this crisis,” said Achim Steiner, Administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP), in reference to… Continue reading Sri Lanka’s misery should be warning to us all on global food, fuel and finance crisis: UNDP

What COVID-19 taught us about risk in a complex, inter-connected world

From the mangroves of West Bengal to the vast archipelago that makes up Indonesia, and from the bustling port city of Guayaquil, Ecuador, to the tropical shores of southern Togo, systemic risks from the COVID-19 pandemic have been exposed in stark human terms. Millions of people who were already struggling to make ends meet, often… Continue reading What COVID-19 taught us about risk in a complex, inter-connected world

Flight from cities due to COVID-19 short-lived, says flagship UN-Habitat report

The large-scale flight from major cities in the early stages of the pandemic to the perceived safety of the countryside, or smaller towns, was a short-term response that will not alter the course of global urbanization, according to the UN-Habitat’s flagship World Cities Report 2022 – Envisaging the Future of Cities. The biannual report was… Continue reading Flight from cities due to COVID-19 short-lived, says flagship UN-Habitat report

Sanctions on Russia already hitting remittance-dependent countries in Central Asia: IOM

The countries of Central Asia retain their Soviet-era socio-economic and political ties with the Russian Federation.  Migration, and in particular remittances, is at the center of this intricate, historical relationship, say Hyo Jeong Jung, IOM Labour Migration Specialist based in Kyrgyzstan, and Michael Newson, Senior Regional Labour Mobility and Social Inclusion Specialist, based at IOM in… Continue reading Sanctions on Russia already hitting remittance-dependent countries in Central Asia: IOM

World’s most vulnerable now paying even more, for less food: FAO

Countries are expected to spend a staggering $1.8 trillion importing food they need this year; this would be a new world record but worryingly, it’s going to buy them less food, not more. That’s according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), which on Thursday suggested that for some countries, the situation potentially heralded “an end… Continue reading World’s most vulnerable now paying even more, for less food: FAO

Bangladesh: ILO calls for workplace safety review following deadly fire

A fire and explosion in southeastern Bangladesh over the weekend which left more than 40 dead, has prompted the UN’s labour agency, ILO, to urge workplaces throughout the country to address safety shortcomings. ILO expressed its deep sadness over the loss of life, which included nine fire fighters, after chemical-filled containers combusted, one after another,… Continue reading Bangladesh: ILO calls for workplace safety review following deadly fire

A catering programme with baked-in prospects for vulnerable Liberian girls

Agnes-Josephine Kenderman, a Liberian teenage mother, is benefiting from a UN-backed initiative to empower young vulnerable girls, which includes training to help her make and sell pastries and other products. “My name is Agnes Kenderman. I am 19 years old and I live in New Kru Town, Monteserrado County, with my mother and my son.… Continue reading A catering programme with baked-in prospects for vulnerable Liberian girls

African nations leading the way on ‘food systems transformation’: Guterres 

African countries are at the vanguard of a vital transformation of food systems to simultaneously address food security, nutrition, social and environmental protection – all while boosting resilience – said the UN chief on Thursday.  António Guterres was addressing the start of a high-level policy dialogue at UN Headquarters in New York, part of the Africa Dialogue… Continue reading African nations leading the way on ‘food systems transformation’: Guterres 

Africa provides a ‘home for hope’, despite new challenges: Guterres

On Africa Day, the world celebrates the diverse and dynamic continent’s “enormous promise and potential”, the UN chief said in an upbeat message to mark the day on Wednesday. “Africa is a home for hope,” said Secretary-General António Guterres, citing the continent’s “growing and vibrant youth population”. And with initiatives such as the African Continental… Continue reading Africa provides a ‘home for hope’, despite new challenges: Guterres

Global jobs market recovery ‘has gone into reverse’, warns UN labour agency

The recovery of the global jobs market is going into reverse, the UN labour agency, ILO, said on Monday, blaming COVID-19 and “other multiple crises” that have increased inequalities within and between countries.  In its latest update on the world of work, International Labour Organization Director-General Guy Ryder said that although there had been “tentative… Continue reading Global jobs market recovery ‘has gone into reverse’, warns UN labour agency

Nations must ‘act together, urgently and with solidarity’ to end crisis of food insecurity

During a ministerial meeting on global hunger taking pace at UN Headquarters in New York, Secretary-General António Guterres said the number of severely food insecure people had doubled in just two years – from 135 million pre-pandemic to 276 million today, with more than half a million experiencing famine conditions – an increase of more… Continue reading Nations must ‘act together, urgently and with solidarity’ to end crisis of food insecurity

Global economic growth downgraded due to spillover from Ukraine war

The mid-year forecast reveals how the conflict has upended the fragile economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, sparking a humanitarian crisis in Europe, surging food and commodity prices, and exacerbating inflationary pressures.  Global inflation is also set to reach 6.7 per cent this year, or twice the average of 2.9 per cent during the period… Continue reading Global economic growth downgraded due to spillover from Ukraine war

UN marks first ever international day spotlighting women working in the maritime industry

“Women account for just 20 per cent of the workforce in the maritime authorities of Member States and 29 percent…across subsectors in the maritime industry,” International Maritime Organization (IMO) chief Kitack Lim told the virtual Symposium on Training-Visibility-Recognition: Supporting a barrier-free working environment for Women in Maritime. Noting that these numbers are “significantly higher than those… Continue reading UN marks first ever international day spotlighting women working in the maritime industry

Human rights must be at heart of solution to Sri Lanka crisis : A UN Resident Coordinator blog

The severe economic crisis in Sri Lanka shows no signs of ending any time soon, with the country’s newly installed Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, warning of more difficult days ahead. Hanaa Singer-Hamdy, the most senior UN official in Sri Lanka, told UN News that, amid violent protests and the imposition of a state of emergency,… Continue reading Human rights must be at heart of solution to Sri Lanka crisis : A UN Resident Coordinator blog

Ukraine war squeezes food supplies, drives up prices, threatens vulnerable nations

Under the theme Securing Global Food Security in Times of Crisis, QU Dongyu, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Director-General, told agriculture ministers from G7 wealthy nations gathered in Stuttgart, Germany, that the most significant threats stem from conflict, and the associated humanitarian impact, together with multiple overlapping crises. In my address to #G7 agriculture ministers… Continue reading Ukraine war squeezes food supplies, drives up prices, threatens vulnerable nations

Small decrease in food prices in April ‘a welcome relief’

After reaching an all-time high in March amid repercussions from the war in Ukraine, world food prices decreased last month, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said on Friday.  The FAO Food Price Index averaged 158.2 points in April, down 0.8 per cent from the surge in March, but remained nearly 30 per cent… Continue reading Small decrease in food prices in April ‘a welcome relief’

UN meets to help reverse ‘precipitous drop’ in tourism

As part of the “long journey” to recover from the ravages of COVID-19, UN General Assembly President Abdulla Shahid highlighted on Wednesday the need to build a more sustainable, resilient, and responsible global tourism sector. The COVID-19 pandemic ground the entire tourism sector to a halt, dealing a “devastating blow to the global economy,” he… Continue reading UN meets to help reverse ‘precipitous drop’ in tourism

Digital tech investment, critical to workforce in least-developed nations

Structural weaknesses in the world’s Least Developed Countries (LDCs) have made them more vulnerable to shocks such as the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change and the current food and energy crises, and the situation could worsen if they do not fully participate in global recovery efforts.  That’s according to the report Present and future of work… Continue reading Digital tech investment, critical to workforce in least-developed nations

Population and Development Commission: ‘Perfect Storm’ of crises take shape

Against the backdrop of shifting population demographics, conflicts, post-pandemic shocks and climate change, the developing world is on the brink of a “perfect storm” of debt, food and energy crises, experts warned the Commission on Population and Development on Monday. While sounding the alarm over the planet’s unequal COVID-19 recovery and notable reductions in public… Continue reading Population and Development Commission: ‘Perfect Storm’ of crises take shape

Development financing crucial to get global economy back on track

The global economy is under severe stress and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are in “need of urgent rescue”, the deputy UN chief told the Financing for Development Forum on Monday. “Financing for developing is an essential part of the solution,” Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed said on behalf of the UN chief, adding that so far,… Continue reading Development financing crucial to get global economy back on track

Millet seeds, a powerful weapon against hunger

A World Food Program-backed initiative to deliver millet seeds to vulnerable people is taking root in Odisha, India, where it is helping to ward off hunger and improve livelihoods. Subasa Mohanta is no stranger to hunger. It has been a constant in the lives of this 50-year-old farmer, her husband, and two children. Despite 16-hour… Continue reading Millet seeds, a powerful weapon against hunger

Ukraine war drives international food prices to ‘new all-time high’

Global food prices have reached “a new all-time high,” the head of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization said on Friday, “hitting the poorest the hardest.” “It is now more than two years that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to negatively impact our lives, our health and our economies,” said FAO chief QU Dongyu. .@FAO Vegetable… Continue reading Ukraine war drives international food prices to ‘new all-time high’

Ukraine war linked to ‘massive malnutrition crisis’ affecting millions in other emergencies

The war in Ukraine has increased the risk of a “massive malnutrition crisis” for millions of children in other emergencies because of its already huge impact on global food prices, the UN said on Thursday. Six weeks since Russia invaded its neighbour, the UN Children’s Fund, UNICEF, said that imports have been disrupted to the… Continue reading Ukraine war linked to ‘massive malnutrition crisis’ affecting millions in other emergencies

Diverse, inclusive workplace: ‘Key driver of resilience and recovery’

One-in-four people do not feel valued at work, and those who do are mostly in senior positions, according to a new report launched on Wednesday by the International Labour Organization (ILO). Although diverse and inclusive workplaces generate greater productivity, innovation and well-being, ILO’s Transforming Enterprises through Diversity and Inclusion, finds that too little is being… Continue reading Diverse, inclusive workplace: ‘Key driver of resilience and recovery’

Guterres unveils first recommendations of UN crisis group, set up in wake of Ukraine invasion

António Guterres released the initial recommendations of his Global Crisis Response Group on Food, Energy and Finance (GCRG) on Tuesday, set up in response to the hunger crisis provoked by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Russia and Ukraine represent more than half of the world’s supply of sunflower oil and about 30 percent of the world’s… Continue reading Guterres unveils first recommendations of UN crisis group, set up in wake of Ukraine invasion

UN Dubai Forum closes with calls for focus on women entrepreneurs, innovation and sustainable development for all

Youth and innovation were the highlight of the Forum’s closing ceremony, as the three top winners of the ‘Arab Rally’ for Entrepreneurship and Innovation were announced.The entrepreneurship competition for university students from the Arab Region was taking place on the sidelines of WEIF 2022. Sustainable development through entrepreneurship The closing day of the WEIF 2022… Continue reading UN Dubai Forum closes with calls for focus on women entrepreneurs, innovation and sustainable development for all

UN Dubai Forum: Women entrepreneurs call for greater access to financing

Along with this headline event focused on women, the Forum, taking place in Dubai, also held a ministerial panel on the importance of Micro-, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises, known as MSMEs, for post-COVID recovery. Discussion also highlighted the power of Africa’s young generation as crucial to attract future foreign investment in the continent’s development. ITPO-UNIDO… Continue reading UN Dubai Forum: Women entrepreneurs call for greater access to financing

Entrepreneurship, investment key to achieving SDGs and resilient post-pandemic recovery

A United Nations forum opened in Dubai today, spotlighting entrepreneurship, innovation, and investment in a post-pandemic recovery as vehicles to achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Held under the aegis of Dubai Exhibition Centre at Dubai Expo 2020, it is the 4th edition of the bi-annual World Entrepreneurs Investment Forum (WEIF 2022), which is co-sponsored by… Continue reading Entrepreneurship, investment key to achieving SDGs and resilient post-pandemic recovery

First Person: I know what it’s like to go hungry as a child

An agronomist working for the World Food Programme (WFP) in Haiti tells UN News that, like the people she helps today, she remembers what it’s like to go hungry as a child. As a child, Rose Senoviala Desir lived in the northern Haitian city of Cap Haitien and received hot meals as part of the… Continue reading First Person: I know what it’s like to go hungry as a child

Seeds of change in Kenya as farmers lead way on tobacco-free farms

In Kenya, a trailblazing sustainable agriculture project has helped hundreds of farmers move away from the harmful practice of growing tobacco, in favour of a healthier alternative, the UN said on Wednesday. The initiative, supported by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO), in cooperation with the Kenyan authorities, is helping… Continue reading Seeds of change in Kenya as farmers lead way on tobacco-free farms

UN prioritizes least developed countries in ‘plans…investments and…actions’ – Guterres

“Inequality. Hunger. Poverty. Weak infrastructure. Competition for dwindling resources. Insecurity and conflict,” Secretary-General António Guterres elaborated in his statement to the Fifth LDC (LDC5) Conference in the General Assembly Hall. “The hopes, dreams, lives and livelihoods of one-eighth of humanity rest between the pages of the Doha Programme of Action (DPoA),” he added, zeroing-in on the “lifelines” it provides… Continue reading UN prioritizes least developed countries in ‘plans…investments and…actions’ – Guterres

Rising incomes more harmful to environment than population growth

Higher incomes contribute more to environmental degradation than population growth, a report by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) has revealed.  The Global Population Growth and Sustainable Development report, launched on Wednesday, is the latest in a series on major demographic trends.  The number of people on the planet more than tripled… Continue reading Rising incomes more harmful to environment than population growth

Development finance institutions must include in investments, ‘right to remedy’

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights launched on Wednesday a ground-breaking new report for development finance institutions to ensure that the projects they support do not harm people, and make effective remedy is readily available. The Remedy in Development Finance report gives guidance to development finance institutions to ensure that the projects they finance… Continue reading Development finance institutions must include in investments, ‘right to remedy’

Women building a sustainable future: fighting back the desert, amid Niger’s refugee and climate crises

Internal displacement, regional instability, and climate change have created a refugee crisis in Niger, but an initiative in the town of Ouallam is showing how different communities can work together to survive, and improve the local environment. In the dusty plains outside Ouallam, a town some 100 kilometres north of Niger’s capital Niamey, verdant rows… Continue reading Women building a sustainable future: fighting back the desert, amid Niger’s refugee and climate crises

Global trade expected to slow, after record high of $28.5 trillion in 2021

Global trade reached a record high in 2021, but it is expected to slow this year for many reasons including continuing delays in global supply chains, UN economists said on Thursday. Announcing that worldwide commerce amounted to around $28.5 trillion last year, the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) explained that this represented an increase of… Continue reading Global trade expected to slow, after record high of $28.5 trillion in 2021

Haiti at ‘crossroads’ entering post-earthquake reconstruction

Haiti is once more at a ‘crossroads’, six months after a devastating earthquake hit the south-west of the country, according to the UN Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed. The Deputy Secretary-General was speaking at an international event hosted by the Haitian Government in the country’s capital Port-au-Prince, aimed at supporting the reconstruction and recovery efforts following… Continue reading Haiti at ‘crossroads’ entering post-earthquake reconstruction

LIVE: Pledging conference for Haiti reconstruction

The government of Haiti has organized a pledging conference, in the hope of raising some $2 billion to help with reconstruction, six months after the earthquake that devastation the country. 1100 It’s been a very tough 12 months for Haiti; an economic crisis, the assassination of the head of state, rising insecurity and the increased… Continue reading LIVE: Pledging conference for Haiti reconstruction

Rebuilding Haiti: The post-earthquake path to recovery

Six months after a devastating earthquake in south-west Haiti which caused the deaths of 2,200 people and injured 12,700 more, the international community is coming together with the Government of Haiti to raise up to $2 billion for the long-term recovery and reconstruction of the country. UN News explains why support is needed WFP/Alexis Masciarelli… Continue reading Rebuilding Haiti: The post-earthquake path to recovery

Spending on social protection rose nearly 270% with pandemic

Opening the session, the Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), Liu Zhenmin, argued that the pandemic had highlighted the critical role of social policies.  “The COVID-19 crisis has exacerbated inequalities, and multiple forms of deprivation”, Mr. Zhenmin said, remembering that many countries reacted by instituting emergency measures.  “One key lesson is the importance of universal access to social protection,… Continue reading Spending on social protection rose nearly 270% with pandemic

COVID’s pushed us ‘further off course’ from Global Goals: Mohammed

“We are far from where we should be – and the pandemic has pushed us even further off course”, said Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed, noting that “indicators on poverty, hunger, education and jobs are all moving in the wrong direction”. Charting a forward path Although it has taken a great toll on people across the… Continue reading COVID’s pushed us ‘further off course’ from Global Goals: Mohammed

Teleworking during COVID: Risks, benefits and steps to a ‘new normal’

More than two years since COVID-19 began disrupting office life around the world, crucial changes are needed to safeguard health while teleworking, two UN agencies said on Wednesday. In a new technical brief on healthy and safe teleworking launched on Wednesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO) outline the health benefits… Continue reading Teleworking during COVID: Risks, benefits and steps to a ‘new normal’

Improve resistance to neglected tropical diseases, WHO urges

To mark World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day, the World Health Organization (WHO) on Sunday called for an international push to confront the inequalities that characterize NTDs, and ensure the poorest and most marginalized communities who are the most impacted, receive the health services they need. In his message for the day, WHO Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus,… Continue reading Improve resistance to neglected tropical diseases, WHO urges

Rising caseloads, disrupted recovery, higher inflation: New IMF forecast

The institution now expects the global economy to expand from a 5.9 per cent increase in 2021 to 4.4 per cent this year. The number is half a percentage point lower than predicted in October, reflecting several changes.  As the new Omicron COVID-19 variant spreads, many countries have reimposed restrictions on movement, slowing the economic rebound. Rising energy… Continue reading Rising caseloads, disrupted recovery, higher inflation: New IMF forecast

Afghanistan: 500,000 jobs lost since Taliban takeover

More than half a million people have lost or been pushed out of their jobs in Afghanistan since the Taliban takeover, the UN International Labour Organization (ILO) said on Wednesday. In a warning that the economy has been “paralyzed” since the de facto authorities took control last August, ILO said that there have been huge losses in… Continue reading Afghanistan: 500,000 jobs lost since Taliban takeover

UN chief: ‘Global solidarity is missing in action’

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, for the second year in a row, the Forum scrapped its annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, for a series of online plenaries and discussions over the year ahead, under the banner of The Davos Agenda.  Speaking from New York, Mr. Guterres said that thisyear’s event takes place “in the shadow of an enormously difficult period for economies, people… Continue reading UN chief: ‘Global solidarity is missing in action’

COVID means labour market recovery still ‘slow and uncertain’

In its flagship World Employment and Social Outlook Trends 2022 (WESO Trends), ILO has downgraded its 2022 labour market recovery forecast, projecting a continuing major deficit in the number of working hours compared to the pre-pandemic era. “Two years into this crisis, the outlook remains fragile and the path to recovery is slow and uncertain”, said… Continue reading COVID means labour market recovery still ‘slow and uncertain’

COVID-19 pandemic stalls global economic recovery: UN report

The UN’s key report on the global economy, released on Thursday, shows that the rapid spread of the Omicron COVID-19 variant has put the brakes on a rapid recovery, counteracting signs of solid growth at the end of last year.  The 2022 World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP) report, produced by the UN Department of… Continue reading COVID-19 pandemic stalls global economic recovery: UN report

COVID-19 variants, rising debt, threaten global economic growth: World Bank

Global growth will slow down over the next two years in the face of “fresh threats” from COVID-19 variants and rising inflation, debt and income inequality, the World Bank said on Tuesday in its latest report. While economic growth experienced a strong rebound in 2021, it is expected to decline markedly from 5.5 per cent… Continue reading COVID-19 variants, rising debt, threaten global economic growth: World Bank

Global food prices rose ‘sharply’ during 2021 

The UN’s benchmark food and commodity prices index rose sharply on average through 2021, compared with the previous year, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) informed on Thursday.  The agency’s Food Price Index, which tracks monthly changes in international prices, averaged 125.7 points – a 28.1 per cent increase over 2020.  FAO Senior Economist Abdolreza Abbassian explained that,… Continue reading Global food prices rose ‘sharply’ during 2021 

First Person: The entrepreneur helping Middle Eastern women enter the digital economy

Mona Ataya, a Palestinian-Lebanese entrepreneur based in the United Arab Emirates, runs the largest online marketplace for mothers in the Middle East. In recognition of her achievements, she has been chosen as one of the six eTrade for Women Advocates for 2021-2022, by the UN trade agency, UNCTAD.  Ms. Ataya is the founding partner and… Continue reading First Person: The entrepreneur helping Middle Eastern women enter the digital economy

Guterres in Lebanon: Fair elections in 2022, an ‘essential opportunity’ for voices to be heard

Having heard and seen for himself the suffering of Lebanon’s people, the UN chief told political leaders there on Tuesday that they “do not have the right to be divided”, leaving the nation paralysed, amidst multiple crises. “All government institutions are measured on results: social protection, access to electricity and water, education and basic healthcare,… Continue reading Guterres in Lebanon: Fair elections in 2022, an ‘essential opportunity’ for voices to be heard

Lebanese ‘deserve the truth’ over deadly port blast: Guterres

The extent of the devastation has drawn comparisons within Lebanon, to the horrors endured by the residents of Hiroshima in 1945, after one of the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan at the end of World War Two, raised the Japanese city to the ground, killing tens of thousands. Locals refer to the infamous day… Continue reading Lebanese ‘deserve the truth’ over deadly port blast: Guterres

Afghanistan economy in ‘freefall’, threatening to take entire population with it

Speaking virtually to the 17th Extraordinary Session of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Council of Foreign Ministers in Islamabad, Pakistan, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Martin Griffiths painted a grim picture of 23 million people facing hunger; malnourished children overflowing in health facilities; 70 per cent of teachers working without salaries; and millions of students… Continue reading Afghanistan economy in ‘freefall’, threatening to take entire population with it

First Person: Cultivating Haiti’s future

“The earthquake which struck south-west Haiti in August impacted mostly rural populations, and obviously farmers were affected a lot. Many lost their houses as well as their grain and seed stores which collapsed in the tremor; the land of some farmers was also damaged due to landslides. In some cases, fissures could be seen as… Continue reading First Person: Cultivating Haiti’s future

Promoting sustainability and the UN at Dubai Expo: A UN Resident Coordinator blog

Around two months into a six-month residency at Dubai Expo, the UN Hub has already attracted a large number of visitors, including several delegations from UN Member States. Dena Assaf, the UN Resident Coordinator for the UAE, and Deputy Commissioner-General of the UN at Expo, says that the event is a unique opportunity to highlight… Continue reading Promoting sustainability and the UN at Dubai Expo: A UN Resident Coordinator blog

Africa Free Trade Area, likely spur for growth and development 

With productivity-boosting measures, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement could reduce poverty and inequality while spurring sustainable and inclusive growth, according to a report launched on Wednesday by the UN trade and development body, UNCTAD. The Economic Development in Africa Report 2021, underscores the importance of  infrastructure financing that helps link up urban… Continue reading Africa Free Trade Area, likely spur for growth and development 

Omicron: Don’t panic but prepare for likely spread, says WHO

Heralding South Africa’s and Botswana’s decision to report the appearance of the Omicron coronavirus mutation last month, the UN health agency repeated that it will take another two weeks before more is known about how transmissible and how dangerous it actually is. Speaking in Geneva, WHO spokesperson Christian Lindmeier stressed that data suggesting that Omicron… Continue reading Omicron: Don’t panic but prepare for likely spread, says WHO

Despite COVID-19 connectivity boost, world’s poorest left far behind  

Some 2.9 billion people still have never used the internet, and 96 per cent live in developing countries, a new UN report has found. According to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the estimated number of people who have gone online this year actually went up, to 4.9 billion, partially because of a “COVID connectivity boost”.    This is good news for global development, but ITU… Continue reading Despite COVID-19 connectivity boost, world’s poorest left far behind  

World trade reaches all-time high, but 2022 outlook ‘uncertain’: UNCTAD

Global trade is expected to be worth about $28 trillion this year – an increase of 23 per cent compared with 2020 – but the outlook for 2022 remains very uncertain, UN economists said on Tuesday. This strong growth in demand – for goods, as opposed to services – is largely the result of pandemic restrictions easing,… Continue reading World trade reaches all-time high, but 2022 outlook ‘uncertain’: UNCTAD

Financing sustainable development needed more than ever, says UN deputy chief Mohammed 

Securing the funding needed for sustainable development by involving as many actors from different sectors as possible, is more urgent than ever, amid a widening “trust deficit” between the haves and the have-nots, the UN Deputy Secretary-General said on Monday.  Speaking at the Building Bridges Summit for sustainable finance in Geneva, Amina Mohammed urged all those present… Continue reading Financing sustainable development needed more than ever, says UN deputy chief Mohammed 

Coronavirus pandemic could cost global tourism $2 trillion this year

The coronavirus pandemic will likely cost the global tourism sector $2 trillion in lost revenue in 2021, the UN’s tourism body said Monday, calling the sector’s recovery “fragile” and “slow.” According to the latest forecast by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the same amount was lost in 2020, making it one of the sectors hit… Continue reading Coronavirus pandemic could cost global tourism $2 trillion this year

From the Field: Pioneer brings farming jobs to marginalized Bangladesh communities

Farzeen Alam, a Bangladeshi entrepreneur, was laughed off when he approached banks for a loan to start his farming business: today, Oggro Dairy is helping to lower unemployment, particularly amongst marginalized youth. Oggro Dairy is the first social enterprise dedicated to agriculture in Bangladesh. Founded in 2007 by Mr. Alam, the enterprise works with farmers… Continue reading From the Field: Pioneer brings farming jobs to marginalized Bangladesh communities

Arrested development and poverty take a $57 billion economic toll in Palestine

With an economic toll of an estimated at $57.7 billion, the study estimated the cost to be equivalent to three and a half times the 2019 GDP of the occupied Palestinian territory’. Moreover, it indicated that the minimum cost of eliminating poverty in the West Bank had increased six times between 1998 and 2007 – from… Continue reading Arrested development and poverty take a $57 billion economic toll in Palestine

One billion more people could join the ranks of those already unable to afford healthy diet

Approximately three billion people, almost 40 per cent of the world’s population, cannot afford a healthy diet and another one billion people could join their ranks should further unpredictable events reduce incomes by one-third, the UN food agency said, launching a new report on Tuesday.  The Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) 2021 State of Food and Agriculture (SOFA) report – Making agrifood systems more resilient to shocks and stresses – states that, without proper preparation, unpredictable shocks will continue to undermine… Continue reading One billion more people could join the ranks of those already unable to afford healthy diet

Smart, sustainable maritime transport critical to global recovery: UNCTAD

Maritime trade contracted by 3.8 per cent in 2020, but later rebounded, and is estimated to increase by 4.3 per cent this year, according to the report.  UNCTAD’s Review of Maritime Transport 2021 reveals the outlook for the medium term remains positive but subject to “mounting risks and uncertainties”, such as unprecedented pressures on global… Continue reading Smart, sustainable maritime transport critical to global recovery: UNCTAD

‘Dire’ economic and fiscal situation in Palestine requires integrated response

A piecemeal approach to the current political, economic and security challenges in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) only risks perpetuating a continuing crisis, according to a new UN report published on Thursday. “Short-term fixes, focused on stabilizing and managing recent crises are necessary, but not sufficient”, stated UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace… Continue reading ‘Dire’ economic and fiscal situation in Palestine requires integrated response

World food import bill to reach record high in 2021 

The global food trade should hit an all-time record high in both volume and value terms, according to a new report released on Thursday by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).  By the end of 2021, the global food import bill should extend beyond $1.75 trillion, marking a 14 per cent increase from the previous year, and 12 per cent higher than the previous forecast.   According to FAO’s new Food Outlook, trade in foodstuffs has shown “remarkable resilience” to disruptions throughout the pandemic, but rapidly rising… Continue reading World food import bill to reach record high in 2021 

Rebuilding a future for the displaced people of Burkina Faso: a Resident Coordinator Blog

More than a million people in Burkina Faso have been displaced from their homes, victims of ongoing conflict and poverty. Nevertheless, following a recent visit to the central and northern regions of the country, Barbara Manzi, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Burkina Faso, says she met a resilient people keen to find their own solutions,… Continue reading Rebuilding a future for the displaced people of Burkina Faso: a Resident Coordinator Blog

World food prices reach highest level in more than a decade

The UN barometer of world food prices has surged to a new peak, reaching its highest level since July 2011, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) announced this Thursday.  The FAO Food Price Index, which tracks the international prices of a basket of food commodities, is up 3.9 per cent from September, rising for a third consecutive month.  Cereal prices overall increased by 3.2 per cent, with wheat rising five per cent, due to reduced harvests in major exporting nations, including Canada, Russia and the United States. Prices of all… Continue reading World food prices reach highest level in more than a decade

Bachelet: right to social security, matter of ‘the utmost urgency’ 

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said on Monday that the impact of the COVID-19 crisis, and the changing world of work, makes the right to social security for all, “a matter of the utmost urgency.”  Michelle Bachelet was participating in the first ever intersessional panel discussion on the right to social security hosted by the Human Rights Council.  The goal was to identify challenges and best practices, through debate… Continue reading Bachelet: right to social security, matter of ‘the utmost urgency’ 

Green industrial policies key for climate adaptation in developing world

Green industrial policies will be critical for developing countries to adapt to climate change, UN trade and development body UNCTAD said in a report published on Thursday.  The agency has called for a “transformative approach” that will allow these nations to address current and future climate threats while also driving growth and job creation.  The… Continue reading Green industrial policies key for climate adaptation in developing world

Pandemic impact on jobs, worse than expected: ILO 

The agency is projecting that global hours worked this year will be 4.3 per cent below pre-pandemic levels, the equivalent of 125 million full time jobs. This is a dramatic revision of the projection made in June, of 3.5 per cent or 100 million full-time jobs.  The eighth edition of the ILO Monitor: COVID-19 and the world of work also warns of a “great divergence” between developed and developing countries,… Continue reading Pandemic impact on jobs, worse than expected: ILO 

$667 million funding call to help Afghans through economic crisis

To help ordinary Afghans, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) has announced the launch of a “people’s economy” fund, to provide desperately needed access to cash. The fund will tap into donations frozen since the Taliban takeover in August. Germany has already pledged $58 million of the more than $660 million required over the next 12 months, UNDP… Continue reading $667 million funding call to help Afghans through economic crisis

Only ‘real equality’ can end vicious cycle of poverty

Although poverty and privilege “continue to reproduce themselves in vicious cycles”, it is possible to break the chain and shift the paradigm, an independent UN human rights expert told the General Assembly on Wednesday.  Presenting his report, The persistence of poverty: how real equality can break the vicious cycle, Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Olivier De Shutter, said that “with political will”, it is possible… Continue reading Only ‘real equality’ can end vicious cycle of poverty

Rush for new profits posing threat to human rights, UN experts warn 

The finance industry’s demand for new sources of capital worldwide to satisfy investors, is having a serious negative impact on the enjoyment of human rights, a group of UN-appointed independent rights experts have warned.  Among the rights at risk from increasing speculation in the financial markets by hedge funds and other investment funds, are the right to safe drinking water and sanitation, food, adequate housing, development, and a healthy and… Continue reading Rush for new profits posing threat to human rights, UN experts warn 

Business leaders join UN chief to step up action for sustainability 

Business leaders joined UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Tuesday, to step up delivery of critical investment, for a ‘sustainable, net zero, resilient and equitable world’.  The Global Investors for Sustainable Development (GISD) Alliance, which brings together 30 business giants worth an estimated $16 trillion, met Mr. Guterres in New York, and outlined concrete actions for the future.   Since October 2019, when the Secretary-General convened the GISD Alliance, its CEOs and other top executives have… Continue reading Business leaders join UN chief to step up action for sustainability 

In highly uneven recovery, global investment flows rebound 

That’s according to the latest Investment Trends Monitor, released this Tuesday by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).   It shows the increase in the first two quarters in FDI, recovered more than 70 per cent of the losses stemming from the COVID-19 crisis in 2020.  For the UNCTAD‘s director of investment and enterprise, James Zhan, the good news “masks the growing divergence in FDI flows between developed and developing economies, as well as the lag… Continue reading In highly uneven recovery, global investment flows rebound 

Food Heroes: Cameroon’s shrimp entrepreneur

Anastasie Obama, a Cameroonian woman who set up her own smoked shrimp business, has been recognized by the UN’s Food and Agriculture Agency (FAO) as a Food Hero, for her contribution towards unlocking the potential of selling shellfish locally and abroad. Cameroon sits on the Atlantic coast where Western and Central Africa meet. It was named… Continue reading Food Heroes: Cameroon’s shrimp entrepreneur

‘Time for action’ to support most fragile States: Guterres

From COVID-19 to the climate crisis and growing inequality, Secretary-General António Guterres underscored, at a financial meeting on Thursday, the importance of greater commitment and cooperation for a “more peaceful and prosperous future”. The pandemic has forced more than 100 million people into poverty and more than four billion have little or no social support,… Continue reading ‘Time for action’ to support most fragile States: Guterres

Trade can play a pivotal role in addressing climate change, says UN report 

Economies in the Asia-Pacific region need to urgently reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including to maintain their trade competitiveness as carbon taxes at borders threaten to rise, according to a new United Nations report.   Around 16 million new jobs could be created in clean energy, energy efficiency, engineering, manufacturing and construction industries in the Asia-Pacific region, more than compensating for the estimated loss of five million jobs by downscaling… Continue reading Trade can play a pivotal role in addressing climate change, says UN report 

Cotton sustains more than 100 million families worldwide 

A single metric tonne of cotton provides jobs for five people on average, often in some of the world’s most impoverished regions; that adds up around 100 million families across the globe.  To recognize these and other contributions, the United Nations is marking World Cotton Day, this Thursday.  Cotton is an important means of livelihood for millions of smallholders and attracts export revenues to some of the poorest… Continue reading Cotton sustains more than 100 million families worldwide 

Inequalities between ethnic groups are stark, new UN report reveals 

Differences in so-called multidimensional poverty among ethnic groups are consistently high across many countries, according to a new analysis released this Thursday.  The global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI), produced by the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative, also found that in nine specific ethnic groups surveyed, more than 90 per cent of the population is trapped in poverty.   In some cases, disparities… Continue reading Inequalities between ethnic groups are stark, new UN report reveals