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International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD)

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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 acknowledged.

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.

Objective

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.

Actions

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 follow-up actions.

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 developing countries.

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 fields.

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.

Objective

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.

Actions

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 appropriate.

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.

Objectives

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.

Actions

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-…-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 system.

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 review;

(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 regard.

Notes

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 slum-dwellers.

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 (WHO/MSM/92.5)).

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.

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