26 Nov 2004

UN says Pacific states lagging in fight against poverty

11:38 am on 26 November 2004

The United Nations says the Pacific Islands are second only to sub-Saharan Africa in making the least headway in reducing hunger and poverty.

World leaders have agreed to cut hunger and poverty in half by 2015 as the chief Millennium Development Goal.

Charts from the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs suggest a fall in measles immunisation across the Pacific, and an increase in the spread of HIV/Aids and tuberculosis.

The statistics released in New York yesterday point to further deforestation in the Pacific, and poor access to drinking water and sanitation.

The world body also sees the Pacific falling back on youth unemployment, girls' enrolment in secondary schools and women's representation in parliaments.