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Last Updated: Monday, 2 July 2007, 15:58 GMT 16:58 UK
UN leader asks for increased aid
By David Bamford
BBC News

Ban Ki-moon
Ban Ki-moon says the world needs to increase aid efforts
The United Nations secretary general says the world will struggle to meet the Millennium Development goals on eradicating extreme global poverty.

Ban Ki-moon urged wealthy countries to increase significantly their international aid budgets.

He said millions of lives now hang in the balance, even before climate change begins to have a negative effect.

Many critical targets were being missed in Africa, he said, with rich nations not giving enough aid to poorer states.

In his report marking the halfway stage of the Millennium Development programme, Mr Ban spoke of mixed progress towards reaching the goals set in 2000 on alleviating disease and hunger within 15 years.

He said some regions, especially in Asia, had made great strides.

But in sub-Saharan Africa, he says no single country is on target to meet its key targets, including halving extreme poverty, ensuring universal primary education and stemming the HIV/Aids epidemic.

Children affected

Only five of the rich countries - Denmark, Luxembourg, Holland, Norway and Sweden - have met the UN target of providing 0.7% of national income to development aid.

Fast growth in Asia has raised the prospect that global poverty targets could be met, with fewer than 20% of people now living on less than a dollar a day - already a 4% improvement.

There is also progress in Asia on reducing child hunger.

Even in Africa, the number of children in primary education has gone up 13% since the start of the decade - it is now at 70%.

Globally, one in ten young children are still not in school. Child mortality is down 16%, but meeting the 2015 target would mean a 70% drop.

And all this, warns the report, before the impending concerns about climate change start to hit hard.

China unveils climate change plan
04 Jun 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Profile: Ban Ki-moon
13 Oct 06 |  Asia-Pacific
Profile: United Nations
14 Jun 07 |  Country profiles

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