News / Africa

ADB: Rising Food Prices Could Increase Poverty in Asia

A vegetable vendor carries his child at a stall in Beijing. China's consumer prices rose 5.4 percent over a year ago, driven by 11.7 percent surge in food costs,  Apr 16, 2011
A vegetable vendor carries his child at a stall in Beijing. China's consumer prices rose 5.4 percent over a year ago, driven by 11.7 percent surge in food costs, Apr 16, 2011

A study by the Asian Development Bank finds that domestic food prices in many regional economies have risen on average 10 percent in early 2011.

Xianbin Yao, director general of the Regional and Sustainable Development Department at the Asian Development Bank, says these steep price increases could push an additional 64 million people into extreme poverty.

"Asia, despite its rapid growth, and it is still home to a majority of the worlds poor.  We have about 900 million in this, absolute poverty.  And, it is for this group of people, they are spending on about average two thirds, more than two thirds on foods.  So, with a 10 percent increase on food prices their real income eroded," Yao said.

Some food inflation was expected, but the report says that fast and persistent increases in the cost of many Asian food staples, coupled with sharply rising oil prices, could weaken Asian economies.

If the global food and oil price hikes seen in early part of 2011 persist for the remainder of the year, the report says, economic growth in the region could be reduced by up to 1.5 percent.

The report says many of the conditions that drove up food prices in 2008 are at work again. These include rising demand from wealthier developing countries; competing uses for food grains; shrinking available agricultural land; and, stagnant or declining crop yields.  Also this year, a weakened dollar and production shortfalls caused by bad weather could push prices higher.

To avert a looming crisis, Yao says Asia countries with surplus supplies of grain or rice should refrain from imposing export bans on food.

"ADB, the Asian Development Bank, has been working with this group of countries to establish such a system to help deal with the future emergencies -- when one country requires importing food and other countries can provide, so more of a cooperative approach rather than a competitive approach," Yao stated.

He says, in the long term, Asian economies must invest more in agriculture to increase crop production and expand storage facilities.  


You May Like

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

Multimedia 100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

Chocolate Too Bitter? Swap Sugar for Mushrooms

US food technology company develops fermentation process using mushrooms to reduce bitterness in cocoa beans, believes it will cut sugar content in candy More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israeli
X
Carolyn Presutti
July 23, 2014 1:21 AM
The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israel

The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video NASA Focuses on Earth-Like Planets

For decades, looking for life elsewhere in the universe meant listening for signals that could be from distant civilizations. But recent breakthroughs in space technology refocused some of that effort toward finding planets that may harbor life, even in its primitive form. VOA’s George Putic reports on a recent panel discussion at NASA’s headquarters, in Washington.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.

AppleAndroid