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UN alarmed at growing ‘feminization’ of poverty

UN envoy raises alarm over growing ‘feminization’ of poverty

The senior United Nations envoy dealing with the world’s poorest countries today called for solutions to the problems faced by women who increasingly bear the burden in those regions.

“No poverty reduction strategy in Least Developed Countries could be successful without creation of productive employment with special attention to women and the youth,” the United Nations Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States, Anwarul K. Chowdhury, told the General Assembly’s Economic and Financial (Second) Committee.

He called on the international community to pay special attention to the challenges of job creation, gender mainstreaming and human capacity development in the world’s poorest and most vulnerable countries.

Mr. Chowdhury also pointed out that sub-Saharan Africa, where most of the world’s 50 LDCs can be found, has the highest level of working poor. More than half of all people with jobs in the region are still forced to live on less than $1 a day.

“We need to recognize that the LDCs do not have the domestic capacity – be it financial, human or institutional – to reverse this negative trend without external support,” Mr. Chowdhury said. Without “significant and well-coordinated” aid from other countries, the LDCs will not achieve global antipoverty targets, he warned.

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