UNDP, UNFPA, Germany promote sexual and reproductive health

02 Sep 2009

Berlin - UNDP Administrator Helen Clark spoke out forcefully today on sexual and reproductive health and development at a forum in Berlin co-hosted by the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) and the German government.

“As long as 200 million women in the world have an unmet need for family planning, their chances of finishing their education, being in paid work, and breaking out of poverty are reduced,” Clark said. “I believe women have the right to make their own decisions about whether or when to have children, how many to have, and with whom – and then to receive support and care to give birth safely.”

Thoraya Obaid, Executive Director of UNFPA, stated that at least $23 billion per year was needed to stop women from having unintended pregnancies – less than 10 days of the world’s military spending.  “We have the largest young generation in human history entering reproductive age,” Obaid said.  “We should not be talking about speeches, we should be talking about budget lines.”

German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul spoke of the need realize the MDGs in order to make progress on reproductive health saying the Goals were “Eight rules for a more just globalization.  Globalization needs rules, and it needs women.”

To read more about the conference, go to www.globalngoforum.org