Monday, October 18, 2010

A MDG summit for the Philippines and grumbles about lack of funding

Government officials in the Philippines are complaining of budget shortfalls in a recent Millennium Development Goal summit. The summit is being held to explore ways to meet the MDGs in the Philippines, but many are warning that some goals will not be reached.

Statistics presented at the summit give evidence that the goal on improving maternal and childbirth health will not me be met. The goal of improving access to education in the Philippines is also unlikely as enrollment has not improved enough.

From GMA News, we read more about what was discussed at the summit.

"Considering the threats of climate change, there will be a greater difficulty in the attainment of some of the MDGs given that the Philippines is one of the so called 'climate hotspots'," Economic Planning Secretary Cayetano Paderanga said Monday during the first Philippine MDG summit at Dusit Thani Hotel in Makati City.

The country is facing the daunting task of achieving its MDGs because it has to compete for a slice of the "shrinking development pie" with the impact of the global financial crisis on developed economies, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo said.

Past experiences have shown that it was difficult to get official development assistance (ODA) from traditional donors during global economic down turns, he added.

As a country with middle income country (MIC) status, the Philippines is less viable than low income nations to qualify for ODA and access development loans.

"Our status as an MIC is of no comfort to millions of our countrymen who live below the poverty line, unaware of the dynamics of the politics of development assistance," Romulo said.

Paderanga said despite government interventions for the MDGs a “significant proportion" of the country's population remain impoverished — 30 per cent to 32.9 per cent in 2006.

“With five years remaining" before the MDG target by 2015, "we need to do more," he said.

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