Asia Needs Funds to Battle Food Crisis

Development bank pleads for 'money and ideas'
By Sam Gale Rosen,  Newser Staff
Posted May 5, 2008 4:40 PM CDT
A worker carries sacks of rice at a wholesale market in Kuala Lumpur, Monday, May 5, 2008.   (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
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(Newser) – Asia need funds fast to prevent billions of people from facing severe hunger, says the region's development bank. The bank today appealed for "money and ideas" to stave off poverty in the wake of rice and wheat prices doubling over the past year, reports Reuters. "The global fight against poverty will be won or lost in our region," said the bank's president.

"The absence of such measures could seriously undermine the global fight against poverty and erode the gains of the past decades," Haruhiko Kuroda said at the Asian Development Bank's annual meeting. The US, the bank's biggest funder, is noncommittal about an increase in aid. "We don't have analytical justification as to whether capital increase is necessary or not," said a Treasury official.