The Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States which was endorsed by the General Assembly in its resolution 49/122 of 19 December 1994, focused global attention on the special circumstances of sustainable development in those States and recommended a series of national, regional and international policy measures to address their concerns. These cover a wide range of issues in the areas of environment, tourism, transport, science and technology, and human resource development.
The present special issue of the United Nations annual World Statistics Pocketbook provides a compilation of basic social, economic and development indicators that together comprise a framework for assessing in quantitative terms each State’s current development situation. The indicators presented can, at present, only give a partial and imperfect picture but can nonetheless serve as benchmarks for assessment and monitoring, for the further development of statistical capacities in small island developing States, and for the adaptation and development of indicators more directly suited to their specific circumstances, as outlined in the Programme of Action. As such, this special Pocketbook can serve as a useful, accessible reference of basic data for each State.