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UNECE MDG Report Highlights Development Disparities Within and Between Europe and Central Asia

December 2011: The UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) has published a report on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 29 emerging economies in the UNECE region, gathering 10 post-transition EU Member States as well as 12 post-Soviet republics in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia and 7 countries in South-Eastern Europe.

According to the report, titled "The UNECE Report on Achieving Millennium Development Goals in Europe and Central Asia, 2011," the region as a whole is characterized by high levels of economic and human development, but regional averages on MDG progress mask considerable disparities between countries and within countries. The report concludes that making economic growth more inclusive and sustainable, and adopting social protection systems and policies that reduce social and economic gaps is an imperative for all countries of the region.

On MDG-7 (environmental sustainability), the report notes that: in spite of the significant decline in GHG emissions since 1990, MDG-7 remains a concern for the region, especially because of poor energy efficiency in a number of transition economies; lack of access to safe drinking water and proper sanitation remain serious problems in many of the transition economies; and large segments of the population in the areas affected by armed conflicts in the former Soviet Union and former Yugoslavia continue to live in substandard informal housing, without any secured property rights. [UNECE press release][Publication: The UNECE Report on Achieving Millennium Development Goals in Europe and Central Asia, 2011]