2020 World Population Day

2020 World Population Day

Commemorative ceremony held for 2020 World Population Day

A ceremony was held to mark the commemoration of 2020 World Population Day at 9:30 am yesterday at the meeting hall of the Ministry of Labour, Immigration and Population in Nay Pyi Taw.

The ceremony was attended by Union Minister U Thein Swe, Deputy Minister U Myint Kyaing, the permanent secretries, the director-generals and officials from relevant ministries, UNFPA Deputy Regional Representative Ms NelidaRodrigus and invited officials.

First, Union Minister U Thein Swe said that the World Population Day events were held annually and they aimed to raise awareness on various population issues and to focus on implementation; in so doing with a theme for each year, the theme for 2020 World Population Day was to safeguard the health and rights of women and girls in the Covid-19 period; the pandemic affected every nation's health, economy and social conditions extensively; it had stopped the travelling from one nation to another and the mutual relationships were also cut; reproductive healthand family planning had taken a backseat as all countries were focusing on responding directly to COVID-19.

He continued to say that according to the research from United Nations, about 7 million women will likely get unintended pregnancy as they are unable to have access to contraception during the pandemic; because of the restrictions, about 31 million people would experience gender-based violence; 60 percent of the women across the world working in informal sectors are experiencing poverty; it can be seen that old people, children, pregnant women and people with chronic diseases are at a high risk of death if they are exposed to the virus; according to the result of the 2019 population by-census, mortality rate and birth rate of the child have been decreasing and it can be seen that the demographic trend has been changing; in Myanmar, the percentage of the above 60-year-old people has increased from 8.9% in 2014 to 10.1% in 2019 as well as the women population is more than rate of men and moving abroad.

Because of the high birth rate in Myanmar in the last decades, we are now in the era of the abundant human resources called "demographic bonus"; if we can create opportunities for education and skills training now to the young people who

are going to come to the manpower, it will provide the high social standard of all people; if not, those productive young people will have to face the job scarcities and the challenges of social security; in Myanmar, only 50 out of 100 productive women are working and it can be seen that they can't apply fully yet their work power to develop the country's economy.

Besides, it can be seen that most of the people working in family businesses and uncategorized businesses are also women; according to the assessment of the World Health Organization (WHO), COVID-19 period will be with us for the long term and we need to predict the impact on the situations of the country's population and

socio-economy; we need to prepare not to get affected to the old people and people with chronic diseases; we need to plan for the women to get access to the contraception as well as for the awareness of the reproductive health and women rights; to create job opportunities to the young people in this time and we need to prepare to make rehabilitation programmes for the people who lost their jobs.      

Moreover, since the peopleare repatriated to Myanmar, there will be more job scarcities; people can be stressed out due to being jobless, and it may lead to domestic violence; thus, the plan to give service for mental health is also important.

The Ministry has been doing all the processes such as accepting the repatriated people through international borders, supervising the construction sites and industries to make them follow the guidelines and procedures of the Ministry of

Health and Sports, and conducting to give social security benefits to the employees from the industries and workplaces which apply to social security law; the ministry is trying to release the result of the 2019 population by-census as fast as possible to review and analyze the current population and socio-economic facts correctly; as they were collected just right before the pandemic, it would assist to analyze the impacts of the COVID-19 and to prepare systemically the remedy.

Afterwards, Ms Nelida Rodrigus explained the performance of the UNFPA.

The ceremony was concluded following the minister and the attendees had watched the video animation clip, which describes the theme of 2020 World Population Day.