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Finnish Official Development Aid for sexual and reproductive health and rights in sub-Saharan Africa.
Finnish Yearbook of Population Research. 2010; 45:143-170.Finland is one of the donor countries that is most supportive in family planning (FP), Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) and gender issues. This study examines Finnish ODA for FP and SRHR: its decision-making structure, other stakeholders and funding levels. Data consists of documents from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs (MFA) and interviews conducted at the MFA and with other experts. While Parliament decides on the overall level of ODA funding, the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development has considerable autonomy. Other stakeholders such as the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Population and Development and the Family Federation of Finland (Väestoliitto) engage in advocacy work and have influenced development policy. Although the Development Policy 2007 mentions the importance of health and SRHR issues and HIV/AIDS is a cross-cutting issue, interviewees stated that the importance of health and SRHR in ODA has declined and that the implementation of cross-cutting issues is challenging. Multilateral funding for UNFPA, UNAIDS and GFATM, and thus the proportion of SRHR funding within the health sector, is however currently rising. Funding for population-related activities has increased and represented 4.8% of Finland's total ODA in 2009. Almost all of this funding is directed towards basic reproductive health and HIV/AIDS issues and the majority is directed through multilateral channels (78% in 2009), mainly UNFPA and UNAIDS. IPPF, Ipas and Marie Stopes International also receive support.
AL-AHRAM. 1994 Jun 9-15;  p.In January 1994, 215 women attending an international conference on reproductive health and justice held in preparation for the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) raised concerns about coercive population policies and fertility control measures targeted at women in developing countries. Similar concerns were voiced in Egypt during a 2-day workshop also organized in preparation for the ICPD. While supporters of Egypt's National Program for Family Planning (NPFP) are content with progress, critics expressed concern over the quality of the services offered. Proponents point to the increased prevalence of contraception (from 10% to 50%) in Egypt since the NPFP was founded in the 1960s and credited the increase to the successful introduction of the IUD. Debate arose, however, over whether physicians who insert the device have a monopoly over contraceptive decision-making and are responsible for allowing widespread misconceptions about oral contraception to persist. Workshop participants also debated the NPFP licensing of Norplant implants and injectable contraceptives before these methods achieved international approval and claimed that these methods may not be appropriate in Egypt. One workshop presentation described women's reproductive rights during various stages of the life cycle, and many debates arose about female genital mutilation. Maternal morbidity and mortality were described as major violations of reproductive rights, and participants agreed that health and sex education are vital to improved health practices.