United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP)
The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) is the regional development arm of the United Nations for the Asia-Pacific region.
With a membership of 62 Governments, 58 of which are in the region, and a geographical scope that stretches from Turkey in the west to the Pacific island nation of Kiribati in the east, and from the Russian Federation in the north to New Zealand in the south, ESCAP is the most comprehensive of the United Nations five regional commissions.
It is also the largest United Nations body serving the Asia-Pacific region with over 600 staff.
ESCAP focuses on issues that are most effectively addressed through regional cooperation, including:
Issues that all or a group of countries in the region face, for which it is necessary to learn from each other;
Issues that benefit from regional or multi-country involvement;
Issues that are transboundary in nature, or that would benefit from collaborative inter-country approaches;
Issues that are of a sensitive or emerging nature and require further advocacy and negotiation.
The overall objective of ESCAP is to promote inclusive and sustainable economic and social development in the Asia-Pacific region, with priority accorded to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. During the biennium 2008-2009, ESCAP emphasizes strengthening institutional capacities to serve the rights of the people of the region and address their aspirations and needs. ESCAP pursues this objective by carrying out work, in close cooperation with other United Nations entities and intergovernmental organizations in the region.
Institutional change at all levels is required to ensure more efficient and effective delivery of essential services to the region’s growing population, increasing the demand for adequate food, clothing, housing, water, energy and transport infrastructure, together with other basic needs.
IT CARRIES OUT WORK IN THE FOLLOWING AREAS
1. Macroeconomic Policy and Development
2. Trade and Investment
4. Environment and Development
5. Information and Communications Technology and Disaster Risk Reduction
6. Social Development
8. Sub-regional activities for development
SUBREGIONAL ACTIVITIES FOR DEVELOPMENT
ESCAP’s work on subregional activities for development cover five subregions:
The Pacific (Australia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, New Zealand, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu);
East and North-East Asia (China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Japan, Mongolia, the Republic of Korea and the Russian Federation);
North and Central Asia (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan);
Afghanistan would participate in activities relating to Central Asia as a member of the United Nations Special Programme for the Economies of Central Asia (SPECA).
South and South-West Asia (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Turkey); and
South-East Asia (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste and Viet Nam).