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Asia Pacific Region to Achieve Just 10% Targets of UN’s Sustainable Development Goals: UN-ESCAP Report

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On 16th March, 2021, United Nations- Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)’s report titled “Asia and the Pacific SDG Progress Report, 2021” states, Asia-Pacific region may achieve just 10% targets of sustainable development goals(SDGs) by 2030.(i.e.)Only nine out of 140 measurable targets of the SDG will be achieved by 2030.

Progress in Asia Pacific Region:

Globally, Asia-Pacific region is too slow in achieving the half of the SDG goals and many SDG’s were achieved at levels well below the 2020 Target.

Based on SDGs:

i.The Progress of Environmental Goals is too slow in Asia-Pacific Region.

ii.Gender equality (Goal 5), clean water and sanitation (Goal 6), affordable and clean energy (Goal 7), decent work and economic growth (Goal 8), and life on land (Goal 15) are too slow in progress and achieving Target.

iii.Climate action (Goal 13) and life below water (Goal 14) are the worst achieved goal.There is no or less progress in these 2 above SDG Goals.

Key Findings of the Report:

i.The maternal mortality ratio (MMR) could increase in 14 Asia-Pacific countries that already have a high burden of maternal deaths, from the projected 2020 baseline of 184 per 100,000 live births to 214 or 263 per 100,000 live births for the best- and the worst-case scenarios.

ii.Deaths of under-5 children in the region could increase by more than half a million over a six-month period in the worst-case scenario.

iii.The report pointed out that at least 70% of mental health services for older persons were disrupted between June and August 2020.

iv.There are 640 million multidimensionally poor people in Asia and the Pacific. The pandemic could potentially double this number by pushing an additional 636 million vulnerable people to multidimensional poverty. Also, monetary poverty could impact 71 million more children in the region by the end of 2020.

v.Unemployment increased by 15 million in the region in 2020. Compared to 2019, workers in the region lost 7.1% of their labour income in 2020, more than $1.0 trillion, it said adding that in April 2020, lockdown measures impacted some 829 million informal workers in the Asia-Pacific region.

Lack of Information:

Nearly 40 per cent of the SDG targets cannot be measured for the Asia-Pacific region due to the lack of data. The goals for climate action and life under water were among the most “data-poor”.

About Sustainable Development Goals(SDGs):

  • In 2015, United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) has set 17 sustainable development goals(SDGs) with a target to achieve by 2030.
  • The 17 SDGs are: (1) No Poverty, (2) Zero Hunger, (3) Good Health and Well-being, (4) Quality Education, (5) Gender Equality, (6) Clean Water and Sanitation, (7) Affordable and Clean Energy, (8) Decent Work and Economic Growth, (9) Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, (10) Reducing Inequality, (11) Sustainable Cities and Communities, (12) Responsible Consumption and Production, (13) Climate Action, (14) Life Below Water, (15) Life On Land, (16) Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions, (17) Partnerships for the Goals.

Recent Related News:

i.United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) released the results of ‘People’s Climate Report’ – World’s Largest Survey of Public Opinion on Climate Change. Around 1.2 Million People participated in the survey, out of which two-thirds of people (64%) believe that Climate Change is a Global Emergency.

About United Nation-Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP):
Executive Secretary – Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana
Headquarter – Bangkok, Thailand