This is the News In Brief from the United Nations
Trade war threatens outlook for global shipping, warns new UNCTAD report
Maritime trade is stronger than it’s been for five years, but while the prospects for seaborne trade are positive, the future for shipping is in doubt due to looming trade wars and restructuring, the UN said on Wednesday.
The warning from UNCTAD, the UN Conference on Trade and Development, follows a “healthy” four per cent increase in global seaborne commerce in 2017.
“Escalating protectionism and tit-for-tat tariff battles will potentially disrupt the global trading system which underpins demand for maritime transport.”, UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi said.
According to the Review of Maritime Transport 2018, 10.7 billion tonnes of goods were transported last year and nearly half were dry bulk commodities. These include iron ore bound for China - the “main factor” in global shipping growth.
This positive trend is forecast to continue at a rate of 3.8 per cent by volume, until 2023, the UNCTAD report says. Overshadowing the positive outlook are concerns about trade tensions between China and the U.S. - the world’s two largest economies.
‘Preventing violence and exploitation of children is everyone’s business’: Deputy UN chief
Every day, across all countries and levels of society, millions of girls and boys face the alarmingly common childhood experience of sexual abuse and exploitation.
That was the focus of remarks made by the UN’s Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed, at an event headlined: “Shedding Light on Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation,” at UN Headquarters, in New York, on Wednesday.
“Globally, we’re told, at least 120 million girls under the age of 20 – about 1 in 10 – have been forced to engage in sex or perform other sexual acts. Millions more, including millions of boys, never tell anyone. The global economic impacts and costs can be as high as $7 trillion.”
The deputy chief said that countries have started to address this issue, adding that “preventing violence and exploitation of children is everyone’s business, everywhere, at all times”.
Indonesia: CERF allocates $15 million to bolster relief assistance
UN Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock, has announced an allocation of $15 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund, or CERF, to bolster relief assistance for people affected by the 7.4-magnitude earthquake and tsunami that struck Indonesia’s Central Sulawesi on Friday.
The UN humanitarian affairs office, OCHA said on Wednesday that more than 1,400 people have reportedly died, with more than 2,500 people seriously injured. It is expected that figures will rise, as more areas become accessible.
More details from UN Deputy Spokesperson Farhan Haq.
“Mr. Lowcock said that the Government of Indonesia is experienced and well-equipped in managing natural disasters, but sometimes, as with all other countries, outside help is also needed. Given the scale and complexity of this emergency, UN agencies and humanitarian organizations are working closely with Government counterparts to provide life-saving assistance.”
The emergency funds will allow UN agencies and humanitarian organizations to provide more support for the Government-led response in the areas of logistics, shelter, safe water and sanitation, health care, camp management and protection services.
Ana Carmo, United Nations.