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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

ADB predicts many people in Pacific region will be hit hard by high food prices

The Asian Development Bank predicts many people in the Pacific region will be hugely hit in their pockets by a surge in world food prices this year.

It says Pacific countries already feel the rise in oil prices, but food will also become a lot more expensive, which will push another five percent of people into poverty.

A bank’s economist, Craig Sugden, says the price for rice and wheat could increase by one hundred percent.

“There’s a waive of high prices coming through the region. There’s a short period in which the region can prepare for these prices, but even so, there’s going to be a major shock to the region over the year.”

Craig Sugden says governments need to re-prioritise their budgets, invest more in rural development and encourage farmers to grow more staple food.

Source: RNZI

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