Beijing, July 11 (Xinhua) -- UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, and Xinhua News Agency signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Beijing on 11 July 2014, World Population Day, to join their forces in raising awareness of key population and development issues around the world.
These issues highlighted were identified during the twenty-year international review of the results of the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) held in Cairo in 1994.
This year is a crucial year for the ICPD. As the deadline initially agreed in Cairo arrives, many of the population issues identified in 1994 are still central to sustainable development and others have come to the fore in ways not imagined in 1994.
UNFPA believes that it is vital to advocate for these issues to make them central in the discussions on the post-2015 global development agenda.
With the signing of this strategic cooperation framework, Xinhua, one of the most influential media institutions in China, will further promote awareness of the importance of population issues and their interrelation with sustainable development by using its extensive global presence..
“UNFPA values Xinhua’s contribution to promote sustainable development through its continued cooperation with agencies, funds and programmes of the United Nations. We hope to focus the attention on the importance of supportive, voluntary and rights-based population programmes, in China and other parts of the world,” said UNFPA Representative to China Mr. Arie Hoekman at the signing ceremony.
“This is the right moment to enter this strategic partnership with UNFPA on the 25th World Population Day in the 20th anniversary year of ICPD. Population issues are at the core of the global development agenda and Xinhua stands ready to support increased awareness of population issues and its linkages with development both in China and around the world”, said Mr. Zhou Zongmin, Director-General, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Xinhua News Agency.
The two parties also launched the Acting for Youth Campaign based on Xinhua's web platform Xinhuanet, designed to raise the voices of youth in response to the theme of the World Population Day in 2014 for “Investing in Young People” .
The campaign will invite interested individuals, especially young people, to send in photos, "selfies" or "snaps" of the world around them, together with messages of their aspirations. UNFPA is launching similar campaigns globally, aiming to gather millions of “selfies” from young people, decision-makers, high-profile celebrities and others, to advocate for youth issues to be included as core elements in the post-2015 development agenda.
“Youth must be seen as central in the post-2015 development agenda. The future of international development depends on what we do for youth and how we involve them. We hope the Acting for Youth Campaign we are launching with Xinhua will be a channel for Chinese young people to join the Youth Campaign that UNFPA is leading globally”, said Hoekman.