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Bangkok - 16 Aug 2021

News Number: N/14/2021

UN regional conference looks to strengthen countries’ resilience  in a riskier world

With the COVID-19 pandemic still ongoing and the annual toll from natural disasters rising across Asia and the Pacific, senior government officials and stakeholders will convene next week seeking to strengthen the resilience of people and economies in the region.

The convergence of the coronavirus with natural hazards has created a complex, compounding and cascading risk landscape in the Asia-Pacific region. Amid the pandemic, countries in the region are also being hit by cyclones, floods, landslides and locust infestations. The capacity of disaster management and public health systems to respond to these converging risks will play a key role in the recovery from COVID-19 and beyond and is the focus of the third Disaster Reslience Week.

On 25 August, the 2021 series of ESCAP Regional Conversations will kick off with a Ministerial Panel on Disaster, Climate and Health Resilience. The Regional Conversations feature ESCAP Executive Secretary Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana as well as senior government officials and eminent personalities from across the region. 

Moreover, ESCAP will launch the Asia-Pacific Disaster Report 2021 on 25 August. The ESCAP Committee on Disaster Risk Reduction - the key platform for regional dialogue and intergovernmental collaboration on disaster risk reduction – will convene its seventh session from 25-27 August.

Members of the media and public are invited to watch the proceedings online.

When:                  23 - 27 August 2021

Watch online:

Key speakers:

  • Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of ESCAP
  • Mami Mizutori, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction and Head of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Petteri Taalas, Secretary General, World Meteorological Organization
  • Nikhil Seth, Executive Director, United Nations Institute for Training and Research 
  • SangKwon Lee, Director-General, National Disaster Management Institute, Republic of Korea
  • Riyanti Djalante, Head of Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance Division, ASEAN Secretariat

Key events:

  • Launch of The Risk and Resilience Portal - An Asia Pacific Disaster Resilience Network Initiative (23 August)
  • Regional Conversation Series: Ministerial Panel on Disaster, Climate and Health Resilience (25 August)
  • Launch of the Asia-Pacific Disaster Report 2021 (25 August)
  • Seventh session of the ESCAP Committee on Disaster Risk Reduction (25 – 27 August)

For more information and a detailed programme, please visit:

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