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Is trade liberalization of services the best strategy to achieve health-related Millennium Development Goals in Latin America? A call for caution.
Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública / Pan American Journal of Public Health. 2006 Nov; 20(5):341-346.In September 2000, at the United Nations (UN) Millennium Summit, 147 heads of state adopted the Millennium Declaration, with the aim of reflecting their commitment to global development and poverty alleviation. This commitment was summarized in 8 goals, 14 targets, and 48 measurable indicators, which together comprise the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), to be attained by 2015. All of the MDGs contribute to public health, and three are directly health-related: MDGs 4 (reduce child mortality), 5 (improve maternal health), and 6 (combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases). Progress towards these goals has proved difficult. In an attempt to identify practical steps to achieve the MDGs, the UN Development Programme initiated the UN Millennium Project in 2002. This three-year "independent" advisory effort established 13 task forces to identify strategies and means of implementation to achieve each MDG target, and each task force produced a detailed report. A Task Force on Trade was created for MDG 8 to develop a global partnership for development. The mandate of the Task Force on Trade was to explore how the global trading system could be improved to support developing countries, with special attention to the needs of the poorest nations. (excerpt)
The Des Moines Declaration: A call for accelerated action in agriculture, food and nutrition to end poverty and hunger.
Food and Nutrition Bulletin. 2005; 26(3):312-314.Agriculture is the main source of income for poor people living in rural areas. As such, a boost in agricultural productivity in the rural areas of developing countries will greatly enhance earning potential as well as produce more food. However, agricultural production increases will not generate adequate gains in employment, and additional steps must also be taken to increase employment in agro based value added rural enterprises. In addition, food productivity must be increased to improve the lives of people and protect biodiversity in our environment. With close to a billion people still suffering from hunger, malnutrition and food insecurity and with the population of our planet projected to grow by 50% by the middle of the 21st century, either we must produce more food on the land and in the water now available to us, or people will be forced to cut down precious forest areas and cultivate marginal lands to grow the food necessary to fuel our escalating demands. It is crucial that new agricultural innovations and technologies be developed. (excerpt)