News

Population issues discussed in Champasak

Date: 05/09/2011

Pakse, Lao PDR – The Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) through its Department of International Cooperation in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), held a Population seminar at conference room of Governor Office in Pakse, Champasak Province on August 30.

The seminar aimed to promote discussion and reflection about the linkage between population issues and socio-economic development and poverty reduction within the framework of the 7 Billion Campaign, a global advocacy effort intended to highlight the critical role population changes play in shaping our future, as the world population is reaching 7 Billion by the end of October 2011. Continued population growth, declining fertility, rising mobility, ageing and changing age structure all pose profound challenges but also opportunities.  In Lao PDR, these factors point in particular to an urgent need to take into account demographic dynamics in policy making, planning and programming in order to help the country reaching the Millennium Development Goals by 2015 and lifting itself out of the least developed status by 2020.

Lao PDR is a country of youthful population structure with 60% of the total population below 25 years of age. It is important to make sure that this group of population both men and women will grow to be the quality workforce who generates income and wealth for the country and for themselves especially for maximizing the benefits from a so-called "the demographic bonus" which is a golden opportunity for development created by a large and growing share of the working-age population and it is expected to last for the next 30 years.

The event featured conferences and discussion on population trends globally and especially in Laos, the opportunities and challenges of population changes, and migration and urbanization and development in Lao PDR by government experts and an expert from the National University of Laos. Participants also had a chance to hear the views of Champasak. The seminar was attended by provincial government officials from line departments as well as academicians and students from the Champasack University.

As part of the 7 Billion Campaign to mark the population world approaching 7 Billion, UNFPA and MPI are organizing a series of activities over the next two months, including a national essay contest, an academic seminar and knowledge contest for university students, discussion panels involving parliamentarians and young people, and the launching of the State of the World Population Report 2011.

To learn more about the global 7 Billion Actions campaign, visit www.7billionactions.com

UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, is an international development agency that promotes the right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity. UNFPA supports countries in using population data for policies and programmes to reduce poverty and to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every birth is safe, every young person is free of HIV, and every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect. UNFPA - because everyone counts

For more information, please contact:

UN System Division. Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Planning and Investment. Tel: (+856 21) 218274, Mobile: (+856 20) 77092479. Email: un.system.division@gmail.com

Mr. Diego De La Rosa. UNFPA. Tel: (+856 21) 315547. Mobile: (+856 20) 59936509. Email: drosa@unfpa.org.