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Population, development issues take centre stage at special ECLAC committee meeting

By ARLENE MARTIN-WILKINS

Thursday, July 05, 2012 | 9:14 AM    

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QUITO, Ecuador — A meeting of the Ad Hoc Committee on Population and Development of the Economic Commission of Latin America and the Caribbean opened here yesterday with discussions centred on regional priority issues related to population and development.

The three-day meeting, which is being held at the Hilton Hotel in Quito, will focus on the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (Cairo in 1994) and the Latin American and Caribbean Regional Plan of Action on Population and Development — drafted after the Regional Conference in Mexico in 1993 —in which the countries of the region agreed to facilitate integration and national experience sharing for formulating population policies and programmes.

Other topics to be addressed at the meeting are the 2010 round of censuses; the main demographic trends in the region and their consequences; ageing and the rights of older persons; indigenous peoples and Afro-descendant populations in Latin America; and international and internal migration.

During the meeting, representatives of all member and associate states of the UN regional commission will address relevant topics regarding population, territory and sustainable development.

The meeting is organised with the support of the government of the Republic of Ecuador and the United Nations Population Fund’s (UNFPA) Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean.

Yesterday’s opening session was chaired by the President of Ecuador Rafael Correa, the Executive Secretary of ECLAC Alicia Bárcena, and the Executive Director of UNFPA Babatunde Osotimehin.

Ministers of population-related institutions in various countries, as well as international experts and civil society representatives are participating in the event.

Jamaica is represented at the meeting by Dr Olivia McDonald of the National Family Planning Board and Easton Williams, who is in charge of the Population Unit at the Planning Institute of Jamaica.

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