The Programme of Action agreed to at the International Conference on Population and Development, along with benchmarks added at the ICPD+5 review, inform the eight Millennium Development Goals (derived from Millennium Summit). These mutually reinforcing development blueprints guide UNFPA in its efforts to improve lives, support reproductive health and rights, and advance gender equality.
ICPD — International Conference on Population and Development
The 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo was a milestone in the history of population and development, as well as in the history of women's rights. At the conference the world agreed that population is not just about counting people, but about making sure that every person counts.
ICPD delegates reached a consensus that the equality and empowerment of women is a global priority. It approached this not only from the perspective of universal human rights, but also as an essential step towards eradicating poverty and stabilizing population growth. A woman’s ability to access reproductive health and rights is cornerstone of her empowerment. It is also the key to sustainable development.
A total of 179 governments signed up to the ICPD Programme of Action which set out to
- Provide universal access to family planning and sexual and reproductive health services and reproductive rights;
- Deliver gender equality, empowerment of women and equal access to education for girls;
- Address the individual, social and economic impact of urbanization and migration;
- Support sustainable development and address environmental issues associated with population changes
The programme of action and benchmarks added at the ICPD +5 review went on to inform the eight Millennium Development Goals.
Millennium Development Goals
At the Millennium Summit in 2000, 189 Member States agreed to help the world's poorest countries significantly by the year 2015. A framework for progress consisting of eight Millennium Development Goals was derived from the Millennium Declaration adopted by these world leaders.
The MDGs serve as a time-bound, achievable blueprint for reducing poverty and improving lives agreed to by all countries and all leading development institutions. They guide and focus development priorities for governments, donors and practitioner agencies worldwide.
The ICPD Programme of Action and MDGs have guided UNFPA in its efforts to deliver a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and the potential of every young person is achieved.
MDGs and ICPD for the Next Generation
As the 20th anniversary of the ICPD (2014) and the deadline for the MDGs (2015) approach, governments of the world have renewed their commitment to the ICPD Programme of Action and have tasked UNFPA to conduct a global review of achievements, gaps and challenges in delivering the promise of Cairo. A review of progress towards MDGs is also being undertaken. The results of both reviews will lead to a new consensus on development for the next generation.
In response to the 2010 UN General Assembly resolution that called for a comprehensive review of the ICPD programme of action, UNFPA has established the ICPD Beyond 2014 Secretariat. The Secretariat will co-ordinate a comprehensive review of the ICPD Programme of Action. A key outcome from the review will be a special report with recommendations for action from the UN Secretary General to be presented to the UN Conference on Population and Development in 2014. It is anticipated this report will also inform the next round of global development goals.