Household water security is a basic requirement of life. More than being simple basic needs, water and sanitation services are recognized as crucial elements that otherwise would put other development investments and public health at risk. Asia and the Pacific as a whole is an early achiever for halving the proportion of people without access to safe drinking water, but not however, sanitation. Most of the Asia-Pacific countries will not come close to achieve the MDG target on access to improved sanitation.
In accordance with Commission resolution 67/2 on promoting regional cooperation for enhanced energy security and the sustainable use of energy in Asia and the Pacific, adopted in May 2011, the Asian and Pacific Energy Forum was convened in order to discuss — at the ministerial level — the progress achieved in the region in addressing energy security challenges at the regional, national and household levels, and to facilitate continuous dialogue among member States with a view to enhancing energy security and working towards sustainable development.
The fact that the Asia-Pacific region hosts both the most and least efficient economies in conducting international trade transactions is generally well-known. However, information on the actual implementation of specific trade facilitation reforms in the Asia-Pacific developing economies is generally lacking.
The Asia-Pacific region has been battered in recent years by a relentless series of shocks. Some have been related to natural disasters, such as earthquakes or droughts or floods. Others, such as the 2008 financial crisis, have been caused by convulsions in global markets. Still others, such as rocketing food and energy prices, have been the result of a complex combination of shocks. The traditional approach has been to consider such events individually. This is increasingly unrealistic.
Remarkable growth and structural transformation in a number of developing Asian countries in the period after World War II have earned them the reputation for being “models” of successful development. Among the factors that contributed to their success were macroeconomic and regulatory policies that permitted them to finance that transformation without experiencing high inflation or balance of payments difficulties and ensure that growth was accompanied by human development advance.
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has been a well-known concept for some time though the interpretation of this concept differs among countries, companies and stakeholders. In many cases, CSR has been abused as a marketing ploy, masking unsustainable practices of companies, in others it has simply constituted a charity event, again, often to mask the negative impacts of companies’ operations. However, the winds of change are blowing, in particular in the wake of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20).
The Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific is the oldest and most comprehensive annual review of economic and social development in Asia and the Pacific. This flagship publication of ESCAP outlines policies to sustain dynamic growth and to make it inclusive such as boosting internal demand, enhancing connectivity to create a seamless and region-wide market, and building productive capacities in the least developed countries.
South and South-West Asia Development Monitor Number 14, 1 March 2013
The Development Monitor is a bimonthly electronic newsletter, launched in early 2012 (issued on a monthly basis initially), which provides an overview of the work and activities undertaken by the ESCAP South and South-West Asia Office and conferences and knowledge products of relevance to the subregion. The newsletter also provides a compilation of news and articles on themes covered by the ESCAP SSWA work programme.