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The Millennium Development Goals Report. PRESS RELEASE UNITED NATIONS. EMBARGO UNTIL 7 jULy , GMT.
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Our work Our team Our partners. Download the new app. The Millennium Development Goals Report United Nations More than 10 years have passed since world leaders established goals and targets to free humanity from extreme poverty, hunger, illiteracy and disease. The Millennium Declaration and the MDG framework for accountability derived from it have inspired development efforts and helped set global and national priorities and focus subsequent actions. Download this publication. Data Dashboard. Data sheet.

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Millennium development goals, where we are?

Community voices. Welcome to Prism. Highlighted publications. Changing Laws that Discriminate. Annual Report Read More. Global Tuberculosis Report Ministry of Health, Nepal. Phalkun M. Data Hub. Lastly, under pressure from developing countries, a final goal was added: a global partnership MDG8 on Official Development Assistance ODA , debt relief, a fair trade and financial system, extra attention for vulnerable countries, and access to medicines and new technologies.

A number of themes were not expressed in terms of quantitative goals, including peace and security, human rights and good governance, the special position of Africa and global governance questions A1 and A3. The MDG system has been successful in communicating a complex development problem to a wider public, but has in many cases not led to achievement of the goals themselves. This is partly because of the limited operationalisation of the goals for developed countries MDG8 and a failure to comply with international pledges, in relation to ODA and reform of the trade and financial system, for instance.

The AIV attaches great importance to the Millennium Declaration and, with others, concludes that the process in which the declaration was translated into concrete goals failed to operationalise a number of important themes, either because there was no international consensus or because it was difficult to express the problems in question in these terms. Besides not including a number of important themes, the MDG system is often criticised for not being based on an underlying economic theory of development processes and structural change, and that the choices made therefore have no theoretical basis.

In addition, the goals were not formulated or interpreted correctly for deprived parts of the world that need to do more to achieve them without extra financial resources. Criticism is also levelled at the lack of any reference to the role that achieving human rights plays in efforts to fulfil the MDGs. Both civil and political rights, and economic, social and cultural rights education, work and gender equality are important in achieving the MDGs. The goals do no justice to a holistic view of sustainability.

The indicators attached to the goals and targets are also subject to criticism, because they measure only quantity and not quality. Nor do the indicators take account of inequality particularly income inequality within and between countries question A3. The progress reports on the MDGs offer mixed accounts of the progress made.


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On one goal access to safe drinking water there has been more progress than planned; poverty has also declined since , but the number of people suffering from hunger has increased to a billion. The question whether all progress since can be attributed to the MDG strategy cannot be answered wholly scientifically. The extent to which the MDGs have contributed to a reduction in poverty is unclear.

Launch of the UN Millennium Development Goals Report - » UN Brussels

Studies show that achievement of the MDG target to halve poverty can largely be attributed to the reduction of poverty in China and to a lesser extent in India, trends that had started before the MDGs were formulated. The MDGs have certainly contributed to greater attention for the various dimensions of poverty, but have also eroded the concept of poverty by compartmentalising policy and ignoring the structural changes and social processes required to escape poverty question A2.

The impact of the MDGs on actual donor policy also presents a varied picture. Donors list the MDGs alongside their own priorities instead of adopting them as guiding principles, aid has not increased significantly and donor coordination does not operate along the lines of the MDG system.

The link is seldom made between the resources required for development and the MDGs. The MDGs are seen more or less in isolation from the 0. It is difficult to determine what the MDGs have meant for policy development in developing countries. Donor-dependent countries tend to say what their donors wish to hear. Some developing countries have adapted the MDGs by, for example, adding targets for human rights or extra relevant indicators such as diseases that occur in their part of the world.

The Poverty Reduction Strategies PRSPs that still dominate policy in poor countries generally refer selectively to the MDGs but, despite reforms, they are still considered by many to be donor-driven questions A5 and A7. Changes in global governance, such as a greater role for the G20, are the result of the financial crisis, rather than being initiated by the MDGs. Negotiations on a non-discriminatory trade system have also been at stalemate since the world summit in Doha. Some progress has been made in mitigating the debt burden of some countries.

The climate problem demands much more intensive cooperation than has currently been agreed in the post-Kyoto regime. All in all the desired global partnership is still a long way off questions A6 and A7. One goal that has certainly not been achieved is the agreed increase in development aid. Although aid increased as a percentage of GNP until , it has fallen again since then, and is now lower than in and far from the international target of 0.

Since there have also been great changes in the form of economic, financial and food crises , which have shaken the international order to its foundations. In addition international power relations are shifting and we are seeing the emergence of economies that are manifesting themselves as donors, while a large part of their own populations still live in poverty. The AIV considers it important to consider newer insights on development in order to examine the completeness and contemporary relevance of the Millennium Declaration and the MDGs question B1.

After studying the advantages and shortcomings of the current MDGs on the basis of important developments in society since and of newer insights into development thinking, the AIV concludes that the MDG system needs to be redesigned. At the same time, the Council believes that it would be irresponsible to make a radical break with the current system, which was based on a major international consensus on a development agenda.

However, the Council would like to note directly that one of the main shortcomings of the current MDG system is that it has been primarily a donor-driven process. Obligations for the developed countries, as in MDG8, were only added at a later stage, but without the clear indicators that typified the other goals. Perhaps the most significant recommendation in this report is therefore, in the run-up to a post system, to promote a consultative process with countries in different stages of development, and with civil society and the private sector.

In such a process the roles and responsibilities of all those involved must be made clear and they must be held accountable for fulfilling them. For this reason the AIV is reluctant to propose an all-embracing blueprint for a post system and believes that the Millennium Declaration should be preserved as the basis of a future strategy. It should, however, incorporate the new elements of the reviews of and A consultative process on the post system should preferably be led by a prominent individual from an emerging country.

This is of great importance for the global acceptance and success of the follow-up to the MDGs in an improved system. The Netherlands can play an active role in this. Taking this into account the AIV summarises below the main themes and identified shortcomings of the current Millennium Declaration and MDG system, together with the outlines of a possible post system. Nevertheless, for many people, the MDGs have become a mantra for an all-encompassing development ideology. They have become absolute targets backed up with the reasoning that whatever is not in the MDGs is no longer important.

As a consequence, every self-respecting group has tried to get its area of activity included within the MDGs. This fixation with bringing everything under the umbrella of the MDGs has resulted in too much attention to detail, sometimes at the expense of the realisation that sustainable and participatory economic growth with a conscious policy of structural change and redistribution can just as easily contribute to social progress as direct attention to the social sector.

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To achieve a better post system the AIV considers it important take the criticisms of the current MDGs and recent global developments into account, and to consider the extent to which a number of newer themes that have until now received insufficient attention in development thinking make changes necessary question B1. Ongoing globalisation, recent global developments and, especially, the financial and economic crisis of call for improvements to the international trade and financial system after In the context of new forms of development thinking, the AIV would first of all like to note that a post system would have to be based more firmly on the capabilities approach of Nobel Prizewinner Amartya Sen , which also underpinned the Millennium Declaration.

Sen identifies five essential freedoms: 1 political and civil freedoms, 2 social and 3 economic opportunities, 4 transparency in governance and economic life, and 5 protective freedoms social security and upholding the law. A post system can contribute to this, by improving ways of measuring prosperity, striving to reduce inequality within countries and giving more attention to human rights principles, peace and security, and effective state institutions — elements that are lacking in the current MDGs.

In a post system a basic level of security will have to be included as a condition for development. Security sector development or reform SSR is essential in strengthening security levels, and should therefore constitute an inseparable element of a post system for fragile states. A peace and security goal cluster could also contain indicators for early warning of conflicts. The discussions on sustainability must lead to a post system that contains long-term targets for a sustainable model with a rolling agenda that measures progress every five or ten years and uses these measurements to make regular modifications to the strategy.

Three principles from the human rights approach are especially relevant and should be incorporated in a post system: non-discrimination, participation and accountability. It is also important to refer to general human rights conventions to ensure compliance with other relevant human rights obligations. Although, in an ideal world, an explicit and globally endorsed human rights approach should be in force, the AIV sees this, as yet, as politically unfeasible in a post MDG system.

Yet there are opportunities to do some justice to the rights-based approach. The AIV therefore proposes that:. The gender approach, according to which equality between men and women is indispensable to balanced development, requires indicators for all goals as well as a separate heading for gender. We also consider it necessary to specify gender-specific dimensions in new goal clusters for, for example, peace and security violence against women and effective governance participation of women in running society.

One of the tasks of global governance lies in the area of global public goods: goods that are relevant to everyone and from which no one can or may be excluded question B2. However, the concept of global public goods touches on matters of responsible sovereignty.

Emerging and developing countries are concerned about erosion of their national sovereignty, while developed countries are afraid that they will have to finance many of the global public goods. The AIV believes that, although the debate on global public goods should be conducted with the utmost care, it is important to establish a clear link between the MDGs and global public goods , because no one can or may be excluded from either.

The need for such a minimum was once again demonstrated during the recent global crisis, as was recognised at the MDG summit in In funding global public goods, a distinction should be made between socially oriented global public goods with the 0. The renewed debates on global governance offer a good guideline for the post system. The AIV considers it important that preparations for the post period link up with the development agenda proposed by the G20, as expressed in the Seoul Declaration. International cooperation has become a multi-actor affair and multilateral institutions could perhaps play a more prominent role in focusing and coordinating it.

More detailed recommendations for a post system can be found in chapter A. V and specifically in section A. Box EB The Hague. For the first time in history, measurable development goals were agreed: the Millennium Development Goals for It is now and much has been achieved. The MDG Review Summit was held in New York in September to take stock of the situation and to see how progress could be speeded up in the five years that remain. The first international discussions have now been held on the development agenda after The Netherlands is taking part in them.

In this connection, I would request the Advisory Council for International Affairs AIV to draft an advisory report that will enable the government to determine its position in the debate on the post development agenda. This request does not concern Dutch policy on the MDGs in the to period. I would invite the AIV to provide the government with an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the current approach and to trace the outlines of a new approach, in so far as it is emerging from the international discussions referred to above and publications such as the recent report by the Advisory Council on Government Policy WRR , Less Pretension, More Ambition.


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  • At this stage, I believe that a exploratory advisory report would be the most useful. However, I may request a follow-up advisory report at a later stage. Publications appeared in the s and s on methods of measuring prosperity and wellbeing that were not only based on purely economic indicators, but also devoted attention to matters such as human dignity and personal development. Thinking of this kind underpinned the series of Human Development Reports launched in , and was reflected more recently in the work of the Stiglitz Commission.

    The Millennium Declaration has worked as a catalyst, leading to a broad international consensus on development. Much has been achieved in the fields of education and health care. However, the current MDG framework is frequently criticised for devoting too little attention to the economic agenda, good governance, participation, empowerment and other political dimensions of the development issue. Criticism has also been voiced about implementation of the MDG model, in particular that the principles on the effectiveness of aid, as set out in, for example, the Paris Declaration, are not always put sufficiently into practice.


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    • I would request you to examine the questions below from the perspective of both developing countries and donors. Main question: What has been the value for development of the Millennium Declaration and the concept of the Millennium Development Goals? In , the MDG targets were set for a period of 25 years, with a baseline in The international balance of forces has changed considerably in the past ten years.