Asia Pacific

Asia-Pacific exports and imports grow at robust pace, UN reports

Powered by China, the Asia-Pacific region posted a growth rate of some 20 per cent in both exports and imports in 2010 despite “murky” protectionist steps by developed countries, and is expected to grow at a robust, if slower, pace in 2011, according to a United Nations report issued today.

Afghan wheat sale marks UN agency’s largest local purchase ever

In a groundbreaking agreement, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) will buy enough wheat directly from farmers in Afghanistan to help feed more than 500,000 people in the country for three months, marking the largest local purchase ever by the agency.

Afghanistan: it may get worse before it gets better, top UN envoy warns

In the face of increased successes by international forces and the national army in Afghanistan, the Taliban may attempt spectacular attacks in the coming weeks, the top United Nations envoy in the country warned today.

Myanmar major source and user of amphetamine drugs, says UN report

The manufacture, trafficking and consumption of synthetic drugs in Myanmar is worsening, with methamphetamine and other amphetamine-type stimulants smuggled from the country affecting neighbouring States and other parts of East and South-East Asia, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNDOC) says in a new report.

Myanmar cyclone victims start to rebuild but need more funds, UN reports

Local communities in Myanmar have shown remarkable resilience in coping with the destruction caused by Cyclone Giri, which killed at least 45 people and affected 260,000 others two months ago, with substantial food, healthcare and emergency shelters distributed, according to a new United Nations assessment.

UN, religious leaders promote exclusive breastfeeding in Indonesia

Faced with a marked decrease in exclusive breastfeeding in Indonesia, the United Nations has teamed up with Government and religious leaders to promote a practice that is proven to protect newborns and infants from disease, illness and impaired development.

Window for political dialogue may be opening in Afghanistan, Ban reports

There is an increasing sense that conditions for reconciliation in Afghanistan are becoming more favourable and that there may soon be a real opportunity for a political dialogue leading to a settlement, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says in his latest report on the war-torn country.

At UN-backed meeting, Asia-Pacific statisticians agree to boost regional capacity

Statistics experts from Asia and the Pacific, meeting under the auspices of the United Nations, today agreed to implement a strategic plan designed to strengthen the capacities of countries in the region to develop statistical records on population, social-economic issues and the environment by 2020.

Pakistan: dwindling funding could leave flood survivors without aid – UN

Even as Pakistanis displaced by the devastating floods that hit their country this year continue streaming back to their homes, many of them destroyed by the deluge, the United Nations and its partners warned today that humanitarian needs remain enormous amid dwindling resources.

Latest murder underlines dangers faced by Pakistani journalists, says UN official

A senior United Nations official has called on Pakistani authorities to probe the murder of a journalist gunned down in the south-western province of Balochistan this week, the fourth media professional to be killed in the country in less than two weeks.