South Asia needs to do more to reach Millennium Development Goals

South Asia still lags behind on some Millennium Development Goals (MDG), with more work needed in bridging income gaps, access to education and bringing down trade barriers. South Asia still lags behind on some Millennium Development Goals (MDG), with more work needed in bridging income gaps, access to education and bringing down trade barriers.

But though the World Bank’s Development Indicators, released on Sunday, show that social goals need some work, economic indicators for Asia have done better.

About 400 mn people have clambered out of poverty – defined as living on less than a dollar a day – taking the world’s poor to 1.1 bn people or 21 percent of the developing world’s population.

Economic growth in developing countries reached 6.6 percent in 2004 with developing-country trade growing 11.3 percent in 2003, almost double the 6.3 percent growth in global trade.

Global trade, which is measured as the sum of imports plus exports, was dominated by China, which sucked up most of the trade into East Asia.

In 2003, China alone made up five percent of world trade and 20 percent of developing country trade, the Bank said in its indicators.

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