High food prices keep 20 million in poverty

High food prices prevented nearly 20 million people in Asia and the Pacific from climbing out of poverty last year and an additional 42 million in the region could remain poor if inflation continues.

Women farming

That’s the conclusion of a new United Nations study of poverty in the Asia-Pacific region.

Charles Appel reports.

The study from ESCAP, the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific examined the underlying causes of inflation in the region.

According to the study, bad weather in key food-producing countries and increasing use of crops for fuel are contributing factors.

It concluded that developing countries in the region should give priority to boosting agricultural productivity and forming joint buffer stocks.

The study says rising food prices and other inflationary pressures could stall a fragile economic recovery in 2011.

Charles Appel, United Nations.

Duration: 35″

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