Asia and the Pacific: A Story of Transformation and Resurgence
On the occasion of the 70th ESCAP Commission Session, ESCAP launched the publication, entitled “Asia and the Pacific: A story of Transformation and Resurgence”. It provides an analytical narrative of the transformation of the region, one infested with pervasive hunger and deprivation to the Asian miracle that lifted billions of human beings out of extreme poverty. It tells how the region from a periphery became the centre of gravity for the world economy.
This is a milestone, first-time history of seven decades of the regional commission’s chronicle of the region’s unprecedented economic and social transformation following the end of the Second World War as captured in the annual Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific (in short, the Survey). This publication showcases ECAFE/ESCAP’s contributions to shaping the policies and programmes on economic and social development in the Asia-Pacific region.
It clearly shows the ways in which the ESCAP research and analysis offered a balanced view of the changing development paradigm such as the relative roles of the state versus the market, export promotion versus import substitution and trickle-down versus growth with equity.
Given the emerging development priorities and strategies for the next phase of global and regional development beyond 2015, this publication provides a comprehensive reflection on these traditions and the vision of the United Nations secretariat for the future development of the Asia-Pacific region.
Survey: 1947 to 2015
Since its establishment in 1947, the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), previously the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East (ECAFE), has issued its flagship publication the Survey annually. It is one of the longest, continuously running reports in the United Nations system, providing decision makers in the region with valuable information in forming development policy for decades.
The Second Session of the Commission held in Baguio, Philippines from 24 November to 6 December 1947 adopted a resolution on Statistical and Economic Documentation (Document E/CN.11/63) that requested the Secretariat “to publish a comprehensive annual Survey on economic conditions and problems of the countries within the scope of ECAFE.” The Survey was first issued as ‘The Economic Survey of Asia and Far East,’ in May 1948, from Shanghai. In 1974, the name of the Survey report changed to ‘The Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific.’
The Survey monitors regional progress, provides cutting-edge analyses and guides policy discussion on the current and emerging socio-economic issues and policy challenges to support inclusive and sustainable development in the region. Since 1957, the Survey has also contained a study or studies focusing on a significant aspect or challenge relevant to the economies of Asia and the Pacific region.