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The National Assembly (NA) of the Lao PDR and the Lao Association of Parliamentarians on Population and Development (LAPPD) with the support of the United Nations Population Fund, UNFPA, and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, UNAIDS, organized the "Parliamentary Conference on Accelerating Progress to Achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in the Lao PDR" in Champassak on 30th October.

The event, chaired by Honourable Professor Doctor Phonethep Pholsena, President of the Social and Cultural Affairs Committee of the National Assembly and His Excellency Dr. Bounthavy Sisouphanthong, Vice Minister of Planning and Investment, brought together NA members, Parliamentary staff, Representatives of Champassak Province and 3 neighbouring provinces, representatives of line ministries, civil society leaders, UN agencies and other development partners to discuss strategies and develop collaborative approaches towards achievement of the MDGs by 2015 and beyond

Prof. Doctor Pholsena said "the National Assembly has a central role to play in pursuit of reaching the agreed goals. Our functions of legislation, oversight, budget scrutiny and representation are decisive to deliver results for the MDGs in Lao PDR."

As part of the conference, different UN agencies, including UNFPA, WFP, UNICEF, UNWOMEN, UNAIDS, WHO, ADB and UXO presented a review of current successes, challenges and plans for accelerating progress.

"Ensuring that every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person's potential is fulfilled will be key to the successful implementation of the 7th National Socio-Economic Development Plan, as well as to delivering the MDG's by 2015 and beyond while meeting the goals set by the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), endorsed by the Government of Lao PDR" Said Dr. Esther Muia, UNFPA Representative.

The MDG conference is an initiative of the National Assembly to exercise oversight on the implementation of the MDGs and intends to identify key areas of collaboration between the NA and implementing United Nations Agencies to accelerate progress towards MDG Achievement by 2015 and beyond. It aims to increase and strengthen parliamentary involvement in the implementation and monitoring of MDGs in the Lao PDR.

For further information please contact:
Mr. Diego De La Rosa. Advocacy and Communications Officer, United Nations Population Fund - UNFPA. 
Tel: (+856 21) 315547. Mobile: (+856) 020 7791053, E-mail :