Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Region has seen considerable economic growth over past decade

“Today, people in the Caribbean and Latin America are more empowered than they were 20 years ago,” says the Executive Director of the UN Population Fund (UNFPA).

Dr. Babatunda Osotimehin is of the view that the region has seen considerable economic growth over the past decade, and social protection programmes in many countries are ensuring that more people, including the poor and disenfranchised, are benefiting from this growth.

Speaking at the opening of the Regional Conference on Population and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean, Dr. Osotimehin said that the region has seen important progress in gender equality and in women’s participation in the social, economic and political spheres.

However, he stressed that much work remains in order to achieve full gender equality; increase the capacity of women to exercise their sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights; reduce gender-based violence; improve the balance between women’s productive and reproductive lives; and in so doing increase their ability to participate much more fully in the economy, in political processes and in public life.

Dr. Osotimehin further emphasised that promoting gender equality in a post-2015 world includes finishing the work of the Millennium Declaration.

He pointed out that unfortunately, the MDGs that are most off-track are those directly linked to achieving gender equality, such as reducing maternal death and ensuring universal reproductive health and rights. This, he said, is despite overwhelming evidence that gender inequality significantly slows economic growth in both rich and poor countries.

The four-day conference, one of the largest intergovernmental meetings in recent years, was attended by more than 800 delegates, including representatives from more than 30 Latin American and Caribbean countries, who discussed a regional population and development agenda beyond 2014. (TL)

No comments:

Post a Comment