Social Protection

Despite high and long-lasting economic growth, inequalities are widening in most countries in the Asia and Pacific region. Currently 1 out of every 3 (1.64 billion) people in the region live on less than USD 2.00 per day, deprived of basic rights, and vulnerable to increased economic and environmental risks.

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ESCAP and ADB explore ways of collaborating in the area of social protection

ESCAP held the 10th annual consultation meeting with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) at the United Nations Conference Centre in Bangkok, on 18 July 2014. Both organizations took stock of the progress made in the main collaboration areas and agreed on the priorities for the coming year, in particular on the post-2015 development agenda. Recognizing the transformative role social protection plays in long-term inclusive and sustainable development, ESCAP and ADB identified opportunities for enhancing their partnership in this area.

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ESCAP participates in ADB workshop on the Social Protection Index

ESCAP participated in an inception workshop on updating and improving the Social Protection Index (SPI) at the headquarters of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Manila, Philippines, 3-4 April 2014.

More than 50 participants from national statists offices and research centres from over 20 countries across Asia and the Pacific discussed ways of improving the SPI and relevant data collection.  Developed by ADB in 2005 and updated in 2013, the SPI is an indicator that summarizes the extent of social protection in the region.

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Fiji explores the ESCAP Social Protection Toolbox

More than 60 high-level government representatives, including the Minister of Social Welfare, Women and Poverty Alleviation, Government of Fiji and three Permanent Secretaries, as well as key stakeholders from civil society and academia gathered in Suva, Fiji to discuss the Social Protection Toolbox, a cutting-edge platform designed by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) to build consensus toward broader and more robust social protection coverage (www.socialprotection-toolbox.org).

Papers

Income support schemes in Pacific island countries: a brief overview

The food, fuel and financial crises have again illustrated the need for social protection, and particularly income support schemes. Income support schemes are often considered as an important tool not only as a response to crises, but particularly as a tool to build resilience in populations. Basic income security, especially for the most vulnerable groups, is an element of the United Nations social protection floor, combined with universal access to health and education.

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ESCAP convenes an Interregional EGM on the Social Protection Toolbox

Convened by the Social Development Division of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), the Expert Group Meeting (EGM) brought together over 60 social protection experts from Government, civil society, academia, the UN system and international organizations from Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, Western Asia and Africa.