STATEMENT BY MS. MARISELA PADRON QUERO, UNFPA DIRECTOR FOR LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN, ON THE OCCASION OF THE LAUNCH OF THE CARICOM-UNFPA SOUTH-SOUTH COOPERATION AGREEMENT, 28 FEBRUARY 2006, TURKEYEN, GREATER GEORGETOWN, GUYANA
Posted in: Statements from CARICOM Meetings by admin | 28 February 2006 | Release Ref #: 50/2006 | 1516
Dr. Edward Greene, Assistant Secretary General CARICOM Secretariat;
Ambassador Lolita Applewhaite, Deputy Secretary-General, CARICOM;
Dr. Dennis Benn, Michael Manley Professor, Public Affairs and Public Policy, UWI, Mona
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, colleagues,
Current economic international developments triggered by globalization highlight the critical role and contributions of partnerships among developing countries. The regional movement towards the establishment of a CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) as well as the South- South cooperation initiatives aimed at the achievement of sustainable growth and development demonstrate a clear understanding of this imperative.
UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund and the Caribbean countries have been partners since 1969 for the creation of a better quality of life for the people of the Region. Although the terms of the partnership have been adjusted over the years to meet the changing needs of the Caribbean, we remain committed in our support to the Region in the pursuit of the development goals.
UNFPA is very pleased to be launching today the joint CARICOM/UNFPA South-South Cooperation Agreement, an extension of the larger cooperation initiative that was signed in December 2004 by CARICOM Secretary General, Mr. Edwin Carrington and our Executive Director Ms. Thoraya Obaid.
This South-South Mechanism that we are launching today provides opportunities to share skills and experiences from other developing countries within and outside the Caribbean. It provides a framework to share technical skills in the areas of reproductive health, HIV/AIDS prevention, population and development strategies, data for development planning and the promotion of gender equality. UNFPA sees this Agreement as a continuation of a process of cooperation with CARICOM that has already yielded many successes.
In 2005, UNFPA partnered with CARICOM on several programmes.
• We provided technical assistance to ten countries to clean the 2000 round of census data and we are working with them to increase capacity to plan for the 2010 round of censuses. These initiatives will improve the availability of sex disaggregated data to guide gender sensitive national policies and programmes;
• We participated in training on Vital Statistics;
• We Participated in COHSOD and provided technical assistance to support the Caribbean consensus on the new target on universal access to reproductive health under MDG 5. We also facilitated the development of gender sensitive targets and indicators for the MDG’s that are related to Caribbean reality;
• We contributed to strengthening CARICOM’s Health and Family Life Education programme to better equip young people to deal with sexual and reproductive health issues including HIV/AIDS;
• We have also supported PANCAP (Pan Caribbean Partnership on HIV/AIDS) in interfaith dialogue around strategies to combat HIV/AIDS.
In closing, let me once again say how pleased I am about the positive things that are taking place as a result of the cooperation agreement between CARICOM and UNFPA. I hope that our partnership will continue to grow as we work together for the sustainable development of the Region.