[ Back to Population Summit ]
[ Previous Chapter ] [ Next Chapter ]
Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development
Chapter 16 : Follow-Up to the Conference
A. Activities at the national level
B. Subregional and regional activities
C. Activities at the international level
A. Activities at the national level
[ UP ]
Basis for action
16.1. The significance of the International Conference on Population and Development
will depend on the willingness of Governments, local communities, the non-governmental
sector, the international community and all other concerned organizations and individuals
to turn the recommendations of the Conference into action. This commitment will be of
particular importance at the national and individual levels. Such a willingness to truly
integrate population concerns into all aspects of economic and social activity and their
interrelationships will greatly assist in the achievement of an improved quality of life
for all individuals as well as for future generations. All efforts must be pursued towards
sustained economic growth within the context of sustainable development.
16.2. The extensive and varied preparatory processes at the international, regional,
subregional, national and local levels have constituted an important contribution to the
formulation of the present Programme of Action. Considerable institutional development has
taken place in many countries in order to steer the national preparatory process; greater
awareness of population issues has been fostered through public information and education
campaigns, and national reports have been prepared for the Conference. The great majority
of countries participating in the Conference responded to an invitation to prepare
comprehensive national population reports. The complementarity of those reports to others
commissioned by recent international conferences and initiatives relating to
environmental, economic and social development is noteworthy and encouraging. The
importance of building on these activities in the follow-up to the Conference is fully
16.3. The main functions related to Conference follow-up include policy guidance,
including building strong political support at all levels for population and development;
resource mobilization; coordination and mutual accountability of efforts to implement the
Programme of Action; problem solving and sharing of experience within and between
countries; and monitoring and reporting of progress in the implementation of the Programme
of Action. Each of these functions requires concerted and coordinated follow-up at the
national and international levels, and must fully involve all relevant individuals and
organizations, including non-governmental
* The Holy See expressed a general reservation on this chapter. The reservation is to
be interpreted in terms of the statement made by the representative of the Holy See at the
14th plenary meeting, on 13 September 1994.
and community-based organizations. Implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the
Programme of Action at all levels should be conducted in a manner consistent with its
principles and objectives.
16.4. The implementation of the present Programme of Action at all levels must be
viewed as part of an integrated follow-up effort to major international conferences,
including the present Conference, the World Conference on Health for All, the World
Conference on Education for All, the World Summit for Children, the United Nations
Conference on the Least Developed Countries, the United Nations Conference on Environment
and Development, the International Conference on Nutrition, the World Conference on Human
Rights, the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing
States, the World Summit for Social Development, the Fourth World Conference on Women and
the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II).
16.5. The implementation of the goals, objectives and actions of the present Programme
of Action will in many instances require additional resources.
16.6. The objective is to encourage and enable countries to fully and effectively
implement the Programme of Action, through appropriate and relevant policies and
programmes at the national level.
16.7. Governments should: (a) commit themselves at the highest political level to
achieving the goals and objectives contained in the present Programme of Action and (b)
take a lead role in coordinating the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of
16.8. Governments, organizations of the United Nations system and major groups, in
particular non-governmental organizations, should give the widest possible dissemination
to the Programme of Action and should seek public support for the goals, objectives and
actions of the Programme of Action. This may involve follow-up meetings, publications and
audio-visual aids and both print and electronic media.
16.9. All countries should consider their current spending priorities with a view to
making additional contributions for the implementation of the Programme of Action, taking
into account the provisions of chapters XIII and XIV and the economic constraints faced by
16.10. All countries should establish appropriate national follow-up, accountability
and monitoring mechanisms in partnership with non-governmental organizations, community
groups and representatives of the media and the academic community, as well as with the
support of parliamentarians.
16.11. The international community should assist interested Governments in organizing
appropriate national-level follow-up, including national capacity-building for project
formulation and programme management, as well as strengthening of coordination and
evaluation mechanisms to assess the implementation of the present Programme of Action.
16.12. Governments, with the assistance of the international community, where
necessary, should as soon as possible set up or enhance national databases to provide
baseline data and information that can be used to measure or assess progress towards the
achievement of the goals and objectives of the present Programme of Action and other
related international documents, commitments and agreements. For the purpose of assessing
progress, all countries should regularly assess their progress towards achieving the
objectives and goals of the Programme of Action and other related commitments and
agreements and report, on a periodic basis, in collaboration with non-governmental
organizations and community groups.
16.13. In the preparation of those assessments and reports, Governments should outline
successes achieved, as well as problems and obstacles encountered. Where possible, such
national reports should be compatible with the national sustainable development plans that
countries will prepare in the context of the implementation of Agenda 21. Efforts should
also be made to devise an appropriate consolidated reporting system, taking into account
all relevant United Nations conferences having national reporting requirements in related
B. Subregional and regional activities
[ UP ]
Basis for action
16.14. Activities undertaken at both the subregional and regional levels have been an
important aspect of preparations for the Conference. The outcome of subregional and
regional preparatory meetings on population and development has clearly demonstrated the
importance of acknowledging, alongside both international and national actions, the
continuing contribution of subregional and regional action.
16.15. The objective is to promote implementation of the present Programme of Action at
the subregional and regional levels, with attention to specific subregional and regional
strategies and needs.
16.16. Regional commissions, organizations of the United Nations system functioning at
the regional level, and other relevant subregional and regional organizations should play
an active role within their mandates regarding the implementation of the present Programme
of Action through subregional and regional initiatives on population and development. Such
action should be coordinated among the organizations concerned at the subregional and
regional levels, with a view to ensuring efficient and effective action in addressing
specific population and development issues relevant to the regions concerned, as
16.17. At the subregional and regional levels:
(a) Governments in the subregions and regions and relevant organizations are invited,
where appropriate, to reinforce existing follow-up mechanisms, including meetings for the
follow-up of regional declarations on population and development issues;
(b) Multidisciplinary expertise should, where necessary, be utilized to play a key role
in the implementation and follow-up of the present Programme of Action;
(c) Cooperation in the critical areas of capacity-building, the sharing and exchange of
information and experiences, know-how and technical expertise should be strengthened with
the appropriate assistance of the international community, taking into account the need
for a partnership with non-governmental organizations and other major groups, in the
implementation and follow-up of the Programme of Action at the regional level;
(d) Governments should ensure that training and research in population and development
issues at the tertiary level are strengthened, and that research findings and implications
are widely disseminated.
C. Activities at the international level
[ UP ]
Basis for action
16.18. The implementation of the goals, objectives and actions of the present Programme
of Action will require new and additional financial resources from the public and private
sectors, non-governmental organizations and the international community. While some of the
resources required could come from the reordering of priorities, additional resources will
be needed. In this context, developing countries, particularly the least developed
countries, will require additional resources, including on concessional and grant terms,
according to sound and equitable indicators. Countries with economies in transition may
also require temporary assistance in the light of the difficult economic and social
problems these countries face at present. Developed countries, and others in a position to
do so, should consider providing additional resources, as needed, to support the
implementation of the decisions of this Conference through bilateral and multilateral
channels, as well as through non-governmental organizations.
16.19. South-South cooperation at all levels is an important instrument of development.
In this regard, such cooperation - technical cooperation among developing countries -
should play an important part in the implementation of the present Programme of Action.
16.20. The objectives are:
(a) To ensure full and consistent support, including financial and technical assistance
from the international community, including the United Nations system, for all efforts
directed at the implementation of the present Programme of Action at all levels;
(b) To ensure a coordinated approach and a clearer division of labour in
population-relevant policy and operational aspects of development cooperation. This should
be supplemented by enhanced coordination and planning in the mobilization of resources;
(c) To ensure that population and development issues receive appropriate focus and
integration in the work of the relevant bodies and entities of the United Nations system.
16.21. The General Assembly is the highest intergovernmental mechanism for the
formulation and appraisal of policy on matters relating to the follow-up to this
Conference. To ensure effective follow-up to the Conference, as well as to enhance
intergovernmental decision-making capacity for the integration of population and
development issues, the Assembly should organize a regular review of the implementation of
the present Programme of Action. In fulfilling this task, the Assembly should consider the
timing, format and organizational aspects of such a review.
16.22. The General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council should carry out their
respective responsibilities, as entrusted to them in the Charter of the United Nations, in
the formulation of policies and the provision of guidance to and coordination of United
Nations activities in the field of population and development.
16.23. The Economic and Social Council, in the context of its role under the Charter,
-vis the General Assembly and in accordance with Assembly resolutions 45/264,
46/235 and 48/162, should assist the General Assembly in promoting an integrated approach
and in providing system-wide coordination and guidance in the monitoring of the
implementation of the present Programme of Action and in making recommendations in this
regard. Appropriate steps should be taken to request regular reports from the specialized
agencies regarding their plans and programmes related to the implementation of this
Programme of Action, pursuant to Article 64 of the Charter.
16.24. The Economic and Social Council is invited to review the reporting system within
the United Nations system regarding population and development issues, taking into account
the reporting procedures that are required in follow-up to other international
conferences, with a view to establishing, where possible, a more coherent reporting
16.25. Within their respective mandates and in accordance with General Assembly
resolution 48/162, the Assembly, during its forty-ninth session, and the Economic and
Social Council, in 1995, should review the roles, responsibilities, mandates and
comparative advantages of both the relevant intergovernmental bodies and the organs of the
United Nations system addressing population and development, with a view to:
(a) Ensuring the effective and efficient implementation, monitoring and evaluation of
the United Nations operational activities that will be undertaken on the basis of the
present Programme of Action;
(b) Improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the current United Nations structures
and machinery responsible for implementing and monitoring population and development
activities, including strategies for addressing coordination and for intergovernmental
(c) Ensuring clear recognition of the interrelationships between policy guidance,
research, standard-setting and operational activities for population and development, as
well as the division of labour between the bodies concerned.
16.26. As part of this review, the Economic and Social Council should, in the context
of General Assembly resolution 48/162, consider the respective roles of the relevant
United Nations organs dealing with population and development, including the United
Nations Population Fund and the Population Division of the Department for Economic and
Social Information and Policy Analysis of the United Nations Secretariat, regarding the
follow-up to the present Programme of Action.
16.27. The General Assembly, at its forty-ninth session, in accordance with its
resolution 48/162, is invited to give further consideration to the establishment of a
separate Executive Board of the United Nations Population Fund, taking into account the
results of the above-mentioned review and bearing in mind the administrative, budgetary
and programme implications of such a proposal.
16.28. The Secretary-General of the United Nations is invited to consult with the
various bodies of the United Nations system, as well as with international financial
institutions and various bilateral aid organizations and agencies, with a view to
promoting an exchange of information among them on the requirements for international
assistance and to reviewing, on a regular basis, the specific needs of countries in the
field of population and development, including emergency and temporary needs, and
maximizing the availability of resources and their most effective utilization.
16.29. All specialized agencies and related organizations of the United Nations system
are invited to strengthen and adjust their activities, programmes and medium-term
strategies, as appropriate, to take into account the follow-up to the Conference. Relevant
governing bodies should review their policies, programmes, budgets and activities in this
1/ Report of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, Rio de
Janeiro, 3-14 June 1992, vol. I, Resolutions Adopted by the Conference (United Nations
publication, Sales No. E.93.I.8 and corrigenda), resolution 1, annex II.
2/ The source for the population figures in paragraphs 1.3 and 1.4 is World Population
Prospects: The 1994 Revision (United Nations publication, forthcoming).
3/ See Report of the United Nations World Population Conference, Bucharest, 19-30
August 1974 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.75.XIII.3).
4/ See Report of the International Conference on Population, Mexico City, 6-14 August
1984 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.84.XIII.8 and corrigenda).
5/ See Report of the World Conference to Review and Appraise the Achievements of the
United Nations Decade for Women: Equality, Development and Peace, Nairobi, 15-26 July 1985
(United Nations publication, Sales No. E.85.IV.10).
6/ See First Call for Children (New York, United Nations Children's Fund, 1990).
7/ See Report of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, Rio de
Janeiro, 3-14 June 1992 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.93.I.8 and corrigenda).
8/ See The Final Report of the International Conference on Nutrition, Rome, 5-11
December 1992 (Rome, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 1993).
9/ See Report of the World Conference on Human Rights, Vienna, 14-25 June 1993
(A/CONF.157/24 (Part I)).
10/ General Assembly resolution 47/75.
11/ General Assembly resolution 48/163.
12/ See Report of the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island
Developing States, Bridgetown, Barbados, 25 April-6 May 1994 (United Nations publication,
Sales No. 94.I.18 and corrigenda).
13/ General Assembly resolution 44/82.
14/ General Assembly resolution 47/92.
15/ Resolutions 36/8 and 37/7 of the Commission on the Status of Women (Official
Records of the Economic and Social Council, 1992, Supplement No. 4 (E/1992/24), chap. I,
sect. C, and ibid., 1993, Supplement No. 7 (E/1993/27), chap. I, sect. C).
16/ General Assembly resolution 45/199, annex.
17/ See Report of the Second United Nations Conference on the Least Developed
Countries, Paris, 3-14 September 1990 (A/CONF.147/18), part one.
18/ General Assembly resolution 46/151, annex, sect. II.
19/ Children, as appropriate, adolescents, women, the aged, the disabled, indigenous
people, rural populations, urban populations, migrants, refugees, displaced persons and
20/ Unsafe abortion is defined as a procedure for terminating an unwanted pregnancy
either by persons lacking the necessary skills or in an environment lacking the minimal
medical standards or both (based on World Health Organization, The Prevention and
Management of Unsafe Abortion, Report of a Technical Working Group, Geneva, April 1992
21/ Safe motherhood aims at attaining optimal maternal and newborn health. It implies
reduction of maternal mortality and morbidity and enhancement of the health of newborn
infants through equitable access to primary health care, including family planning,
prenatal, delivery and post-natal care for the mother and infant, and access to essential
obstetric and neonatal care (World Health Organization, Health Population and Development,
WHO Position Paper, Geneva, 1994 (WHO/FHE/94.1)).
22/ Which could include children, adolescents, women, the aged, the disabled,
indigenous people, rural populations, urban populations, migrants, refugees, displaced
persons and slum-dwellers.
[ Previous Chapter ] [
Next Chapter ]