(KPL) The consultation meeting on the draft National Population and Development Policy (2019-2030) was organized in Vientiane Capital on 22 August 2018. It was chaired by Ms. Phonevanh Outhavong, Director General of Planning Department, and co-chaired by Ms. Frederika Meijer, Representative, UNFPA Lao PDR, and participated by more than 50 representatives from line ministries and development partners.
The meeting was organized for one day with the support from the United Nations Population Fund Lao PDR to discuss the revision of the NPDP which was adopted in 2006 and has been implemented for the past 10 years. Based on the assessment of the NPDP implementation, there are a number of achievements and progresses, including an increase in net primary education enrollment from 94% in 2010-2011 to 98.7% in 2016-2017; an increased access to reproductive health services, a reduction in under-5 mortality from 98 per 1000 live births in 2005 to 86 per 1000 in 2015, a reduction in maternal mortality from 405 per 100,000 live births to 206 per 100,000 in 2015. Despite these achievements, challenges remain and some targets are difficult to measure, thus it is difficult for monitoring and assessing the achievement.
Recently the socio-economic situation has significantly changed. According to the 4th Population and Housing Census in 2015, the working-age population (15-64 years old) accounted for 63.7%, which was increased from 56.7% in 2005. This indicates a demographic opportunity for Lao PDR. Therefore, the revised NPDP (2019-2030) will consist of 9 Goals aiming at developing quality of the Lao population and ensuring that they can benefit from the equitable and inclusive socio-economic development. The revised policy will focus on addressing issues such as reproductive health, skills development, urban development, population growth, maternal and child mortality, demographic dividends, youth development especially adolescent girls. This policy is in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and other national policies. Furthermore, the NPDP will continue to implement the national commitment to the implementation of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD).