News in Brief 20 November 2017 (AM)

WHO calls for release of kidnapped doctor following attack on Libya health facility

An attack on a health facility in Libya and the kidnapping of one of its doctors has been condemned by the World Health Organization (WHO).

The incident occurred in the southern city of Sabha on Friday evening, according to media reports.

WHO issued a statement on Monday calling for those responsible for kidnapping the doctor to ensure his safety and immediate release.

The UN agency strongly condemns the abduction of health professionals as well as any other attacks on medical personnel or health facilities.

Any act that interferes with the availability, access and delivery of health care is "immoral and illegal," the statement said.

Focus on Continental Free Trade Area on Africa Industrialization Day

The United Nations has underlined its commitment to Africa's industrialization and the building of inclusive, resilient, peaceful and prosperous societies on the continent.

That's the message from UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres for Africa Industrialization Day, observed this Monday, 20 November.

This year, the focus is on the links between industrial development and the move to establish a continent-wide Free Trade Area, which Mr Guterres called "mutually supportive endeavours."

The UN chief described industrialization as "a primary driver of economic growth and job creation."

It will be "pivotal" in achieving UN and African Union development efforts over the coming decades, he added.

Technology and other "intangibles" critical to companies' success: WIPO

Technology, design and branding will increasingly determine the fate and fortune of companies, according to the UN agency that works to raise understanding about the value of intellectual property.

These so-called "intangibles," which influence what we buy, accounted for nearly $6 trillion dollars in 2014, or twice as much as buildings, machinery and other forms of "tangible capital."

The findings come in the latest report by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), published on Monday.

It says that food products, motor vehicles and textiles accounted for close to half of the total income intangible capital generates in global manufacturing.

Take high-end smart phones, where crucial intangible assets include technology as well as hardware and software design.

WIPO said companies that produce these devices rely heavily on patents, trademarks and industrial designs, which generate "a high return on their intangible capital."

Source: United Nations Radio