The End of Millennium Development Goals and Beyond
MDGs stands for Millennium Development Goals and it is the world’s promise to achieve the goals such as to reduce by half the world’s poverty by 2015.
In September, 2000 the Millennium Declaration was unanimously adopted by 189 UN member states. In the declaration the international society announced to work on the challenges together to build the prosperous and fair world with peace and to end the poverty.
There are eight numerical targets to be achieved by 2015.
Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
Goal 2: Achieve universal primary education
Goal 3: Promote gender equality and empower women
Goal 4: Reduce child mortality
Goal 5: Improve maternal health
Goal 6: Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability
Goal 8: Develop a global partnership for development
Each of the goals has specific stated targets and dates for achieving those targets.
Progress towards reaching the goals has been uneven. Some countries, such as Brazil, have achieved many of the goals, while others, such as Benin, are not on track to realize any. The major countries that have been achieving their goals include China and India due to clear internal and external factors of population and economic development.
Despite enduring political and economic challenges, 20 fragile and conflict-affected states have recently met one or more targets under the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and an additional six countries are on track to meet individual targets ahead of the 2015 deadline, according to a new analysis by the World Bank Group released.
The analysis finds eight fragile and conflict affected states – including Guinea, Nepal, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Timor-Leste – have already met the goal to halve extreme poverty – the number of people living on less than $1.25 a day.
Among fragile and conflict-affected states, the greatest progress has been on gender parity in education – the ratio of girls’ to boys’ enrollment in school. Countries including Kiribati, Micronesia, Myanmar, and Tuvalu have met the target, and those on track include Burundi, Chad, Republic of Congo, Timor-Leste, Nepal and Yemen
Nepal stands out as the only fragile and conflict-affected state to have already reached the target on reducing maternal mortality. For women in Nepal, the chances of dying in childbirth have been cut in half since 1996. Other fragile and conflict affected states such as Afghanistan, Angola, Eritrea, Timor-Leste and the Republic of Yemen are on track to meet the MDG on maternal health, provided their current rate of progress continues.
Nepal and MDGs:
Is the country well on its way to achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by the target year of 2015? Again, how relevant are the MDG’s in so far as Nepal’s real development goals are concerned?
According to National Planning Commission, the poverty rate of Nepal stands at 25.16 per cent. While the poverty rate in the eastern region is 21 per cent, in the far western region (with the lowest development index) it is 42 per cent. In the rural hills of the mid- and far-western regions, 39 per cent of the population lives below the poverty line. In the urban Tarai and Kathmandu, poverty stands at 22 and 11 per cent respectively.
With regard to education: According to the Economic Report 2012, literacy rate of the population over 15 years of age is 56.5 per cent. Though reports show that 94.5 per cent girls and 95.6 per cent boys are enrolled at the primary level, the high dropout and repetition rates ensure that the maximum number of children do not enter the secondary level. Among grade one students in 2011-2012, 21.3 per cent repeated the same grade and 7.9 per cent dropped out from the school education system.
These figures not only show the daunting task that lies ahead, but are also stark reminders of the huge development gap arising from regional imbalance in planning. The same comment may be made of the urban bias that informs the minds of planners. It is not the aim of the MDGs to correct this state of affairs and as long as the mindset of planners is informed with favored preferences for cities and particular regions, the MDGs will continue to remain at best peripheral in so far as the country’s development paradigm is concerned. Although a few of these goals seem attainable, some other goals appear to be overly ambitious.
The Millennium Development Goals have been the focus of global and national efforts on poverty reduction since 2000. Until the target date of 2015, attention will quite rightly focus on how to make the most progress possible before the deadline.
But then what? The MDGs were the product of at least ten years of discussion and deliberation. The international community needs to start thinking now about what happens on 1 January 2016, if the momentum and global focus on poverty that the MDGs have encouraged are to be maintained.
“Working together, governments, the United Nations family, the private sector and civil society can succeed in tackling the greatest challenges.As the 2015 deadline is fast approaching, we must be united and steadfast in our resolve to accelerate progress and achieve the MDGs.”- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
Posted on July 1, 2013, in Blogging competition and tagged Ban Ki-moon, beyond 2015, End of MDGs, Millennium Development Goal, nepal, United Nations, World Bank Group. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.