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2000/4/16: Millenium Development Goals

The eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – which range from halving extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education, all by the target date of 2015 – form a blueprint agreed to by all the world’s countries and all the world’s leading development institutions. They have galvanized unprecedented efforts to meet the needs of the world’s poorest.


2010 Summit on the Millennium Development Goals

The 2010 MDG Summit concluded with the adoption of a global action plan -- Keeping the Promise: United to Achieve the Millennium Development Goals -- and the announcement of a number of initiatives against poverty, hunger and disease. In a major push to accelerate progress on women’s and children’s health, a number of Heads of State and Government from developed and developing countries, along with the private sector, foundations, international organizations, civil society and research organizations, pledged over $40 billion in resources over the next five years.


2008 High-level Event on the MDGs

Governments, foundations, businesses and civil society groups rallied around the call to action to slash poverty, hunger and disease by 2015, by announcing new commitments to meet the Millennium Development Goals, at a high-level event at UN Headquarters on 25 September 2008. The gathering "exceeded our most optimistic expectations," UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said, noting that it generated an estimated $16 billion, including some $1.6 billion to bolster food security, more than $4.5 billion for education and $3 billion to combat malaria.


2005 World Summit

The 2005 World Summit, held from 14 to 16 September at United Nations Headquarters in New York, brought together more than 170 Heads of State and Government. It was a once-in-a-generation opportunity to take bold decisions in the areas of development, security, human rights and reform of the United Nations. The agenda was based on an achievable set of proposals outlined in March 2005 by Secretary- General Kofi Annan in his report “In Larger Freedom”.


Millennium Summit

In September 2000, building upon a decade of major United Nations conferences and summits, world leaders came together at United Nations Headquarters in New York to adopt the United Nations Millennium Declaration, committing their nations to a new global partnership to reduce extreme poverty and setting out a series of time-bound targets - with a deadline of 2015 - that have become known as the Millennium Development Goals.



Target 1.A:
Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people whose income is less than $1 a day

  • The global economic crisis has slowed progress, but the world is still on track to meet the poverty reduction target
  • Prior to the crisis, the depth of poverty had diminished in almost every region

Target 1.B:
Achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all, including women and young people

  • Deterioration of the labour market, triggered by the economic crisis, has resulted in a decline in employment
  • As jobs were lost, more workers have been forced into vulnerable employment
  • Since the economic crisis, more workers find themselves and their families living
    in extreme poverty

Target 1.C:
Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people who suffer from hunger

  • Hunger may have spiked in 2009, one of the many dire consequences of the global
    food and financial crises
  • Progress to end hunger has been stymied in most regions
  • Despite some progress, one in four children in the developing world are still underweight
  • Children in rural areas are nearly twice as likely to be underweight as those in urban areasn
  • In some regions, the prevalence of underweight children is dramatically higher among the poor
  • Over 42 million people have been uprooted by conflict or persecution


Target 2.A:
Ensure that, by 2015, children everywhere, boys and girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling

  • Hope dims for universal education by 2015, even as many poor countries make tremendous strides
  • Sub-Saharan Africa and Southern Asia are home to the vast majority of children out of school
  • Inequality thwarts progress towards universal education


Target 3.A:
Eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education, preferably by 2005, and in all levels of education no later than 2015

  • For girls in some regions, education remains elusive
  • Poverty is a major barrier to education, especially among older girls
  • In every developing region except the CIS, men outnumber women in paid employment
  • Women are largely relegated to more vulnerable forms of employment
  • Women are over-represented in informal employment, with its lack of benefits and security
  • Top-level jobs still go to men — to an overwhelming degree
  • Women are slowly rising to political power, but mainly when boosted by quotas and other special measures


Target 4.A:
Reduce by two thirds, between 1990 and 2015, the under-five mortality rate

  • Child deaths are falling, but not quickly enough to reach the target
  • Revitalizing efforts against pneumonia and diarrhoea, while bolstering nutrition, could save millions of children
  • Recent success in controlling measles may be short-lived if funding gaps are not bridged


Target 5.A:
Reduce by three quarters the maternal mortality ratio

  • Most maternal deaths could be avoided
  • Giving birth is especially risky in Southern Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, where most women deliver without skilled care
  • The rural-urban gap in skilled care during childbirth has narrowed

Target 5.B:
Achieve universal access to reproductive health

  • More women are receiving antenatal care
  • Inequalities in care during pregnancy are striking
  • Only one in three rural women in developing regions receive the recommended care during pregnancy
  • Progress has stalled in reducing the number of teenage pregnancies, putting more young mothers at risk
  • Poverty and lack of education perpetuate high adolescent birth rates
  • Progress in expanding the use of contraceptives by women has slowed
  • Use of contraception is lowest among the poorest women and those with no education
  • Inadequate funding for family planning is a major failure in fulfilling commitments to improving women’s reproductive health


Target 6.A:
Have halted by 2015 and begun to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS

  • The spread of HIV appears to have stabilized in most regions, and more people are surviving longer
  • Many young people still lack the knowledge to protect themselves against HIV
  • Empowering women through AIDS education is indeed possible, as a number of countries have shown
  • In sub-Saharan Africa, knowledge of HIV increases with wealth and among those living in urban areas
  • Disparities are found in condom use by women and men and among those from the richest and poorest households
  • Condom use during high-risk sex is gaining acceptance in some countries and is one facet of effective HIV prevention
  • Mounting evidence shows a link between gender-based violence and HIV
  • Children orphaned by AIDS suffer more than the loss of parents

Target 6.B:
Achieve, by 2010, universal access to treatment for HIV/AIDS for all those who need it

  • The rate of new HIV infections continues to outstrip the expansion of treatment
  • Expanded treatment for HIV-positive women also safeguards their newborns

Target 6.C:
Have halted by 2015 and begun to reverse the incidence of malaria and other major diseases

  • Production of insecticide-treated mosquito nets soars
  • Across Africa, expanded use of insecticide-treated bed nets is protecting communities from malaria
  • Poverty continues to limit use of mosquito nets
  • Global procurement of more effective antimalarial drugs continues to rise rapidly
  • Children from the poorest households are least likely to receive treatment for malaria
  • External funding is helping to reduce malaria incidence and deaths, but additional support is needed
  • Progress on tuberculosis inches forward
  • Tuberculosis prevalence is falling in most regions
  • Tuberculosis remains the second leading killer after HIV


Target 7.A:
Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes and reverse the loss of environmental resources

  • The rate of deforestation shows signs of decreasing, but is still alarmingly high
  • A decisive response to climate change is urgently needed
  • The unparalleled success of the Montreal Protocol shows that action on climate change is within our grasp

Target 7.B:
Reduce biodiversity loss, achieving, by 2010, a significant reduction in the rate of loss

  • The world has missed the 2010 target for biodiversity conservation, with potentially grave consequences
  • Key habitats for threatened species are not being adequately protected
  • The number of species facing extinction is growing by the day, especially in developing countries
  • Overexploitation of global fisheries has stabilized, but steep challenges remain to ensure their sustainability

Target 7.C:
Halve, by 2015, the proportion of the population without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation

  • The world is on track to meet the drinking water target, though much remains to be done in some regions
  • Accelerated and targeted efforts are needed to bring drinking water to all rural households
  • Safe water supply remains a challenge in many parts of the world
  • With half the population of developing regions without sanitation, the 2015 target appears to be out of reach
  • Disparities in urban and rural sanitation coverage remain daunting
  • Improvements in sanitation are bypassing the poor

Target 7.D:
By 2020, to have achieved a significant improvement in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers

  • Slum improvements, though considerable, are failing to keep pace with the growing ranks of the urban poor
  • Slum prevalence remains high in sub-Saharan Africa and increases in countries affected by conflict


Target 8.A:
Develop further an open, rule-based, predictable, non-discriminatory trading and financial system

  • Developing countries gain greater access to the markets of developed countries
  • Least developed countries benefit most from tariff reductions, especially on their agricultural products

Target 8.B:
Address the special needs of least developed countries

  • Aid continues to rise despite the financial crisis, but Africa is short-changed
  • Only five donor countries have reached the UN target for official aid

Target 8.C:
Address the special needs of landlocked developing countries and small island developing States

Target 8.D:
Deal comprehensively with the debt problems of developing countries

  • Debt burdens ease for developing countries and remain well below historical levels

Target 8.E:
In cooperation with pharmaceutical companies, provide access to affordable essential drugs in developing countries

Target 8.F:
In cooperation with the private sector, make available benefits of new technologies, especially information and communications

  • Demand grows for information and communications technology
  • Access to the World Wide Web is still closed to the majority of the world’s people
  • A large gap separates those with high-speed Internet connections, mostly in developed nations, and dial-up users
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