5th Meeting of the Regional Thematic Workshop Group on Poverty and Hunger

13 Jul 2008
Bangkok, Thailand

The 5th Meeting of the Regional Thematic Workshop Group on Poverty and Hunger included opening remarks by Mr Omar Noman, Chief of Policies and Programme, UNDP RCC, and Mr He Changchui, FAO RAP, Assistant Director General & Regional Representative, adoption of the agenda, presentation of the electronic bulletin on hunger, as agreed at the last meeting (UNDP RCC), the Inter-agency Brainstorming on the 2008 Commemoration of the International Day on the Eradication of Poverty (UNESCAP), discussion on responses to soaring food prices, and a briefing by agencies on current and future activities of interest to the Group.

The delegation of Nepal requested ESCAP organize a High-level meeting to “address the challenges of the food and fuel crisis of Asia-Pacific developing countries and in particular least developed countries”. No decision has been made on how to address this request. Even before the Commission Session ESCAP established an informal working group to look into the issue of food prices and the persistent problem of food insecurity in Asia and the Pacific. The working group is preparing a policy brief on rising food prices.

Concerning the options for the theme topic for the 65th session presented in document E/ESCAP/64/33, several delegations, noting the current food crisis, expressed a preference either for the option on sustainable agriculture and food security or a combination of that option with the one on water security and sustainable development in Asia and the Pacific.