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Bangkok - 15 Aug 2019

News Number: N/16/2019

Asia and the Pacific is facing a daunting spectrum of natural disasters which are growing in frequency, complexity and severity due to climate change, rapid urbanisation and environmental degradation. Many countries in the region could be reaching a tipping point beyond which disaster risk exceeds their capacity to respond. The most vulnerable communities will be the hardest hit.

The Asia-Pacific Disaster Report 2019 assesses the scale of losses across the disaster ‘riskscape’ and estimates the amounts that countries would need to invest to outpace growing disaster risks. For the first time, the report also takes into account slow-onset disasters, such as drought, which quadruple previous estimates of economic losses caused by disasters.

While this will require significant additional finance, the Asia-Pacific Disaster Report 2019 shows the amounts are small compared to the amounts that countries in the region are currently losing due to disasters. Similarly, the report explores how emerging technologies such as big data and digital identities can be used to ensure the poorest and most vulnerable groups are included in policy interventions. The report also proposes a set regional policy actions to be implemented through the Asia-Pacific Disaster Resilience Network.

The Asia-Pacific Disaster Report is a bi-annual flagship publication of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). The report will be launched on 22 August 2019 by United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of ESCAP Ms. Armida Alisjahbana.

Media representatives are cordially invited to attend the regional report launch:

Thursday, 22 August 2019, 1.00pm – 2.00pm (followed by refreshments)

Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand, Penthouse, Maneeya Center Building, 518/5 Ploenchit Road, Pathumwan, Bangkok

Ms. Armida Alisjahbana, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of ESCAP
Ms. Tiziana Bonapace, Director, Information and Communications Technology and Disaster Risk Reduction Division, ESCAP

For further information about the launch and interview requests, please contact:
Ms. Kavita Sukanandan, Public Information Officer, Strategic Communications and Advocacy Section, ESCAP, T: (66) 2 288 1869 / E: [email protected]

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Media Enquiries

Communications and Knowledge Management Section +66 2288 1869 [email protected]