A continuación la pregunta y la respuesta:
Pregunta: Although the Cotonou agreement commits to ‘integrating population issues into development strategies in order to improve reproductive health, primary health care and family planning’, the Commission’s evaluation of the partnership shows that little attention has been devoted to these issues.
The importance of reproductive health care in empowering women and young people was reasserted in the Commission communication on the renewed partnership.
Given the current lack of investment in these areas, how will the Commission ensure that population issues are given more attention in the revised partnership?
What action is envisaged between now and 2020 to favour this integrated approach?
Respuesta: The EU provides significant financial support for health and gender programmes around the world to improve primary health care services, including sexual and reproductive health and family planning, and to address the direct underlying causes and consequences of women’s discrimination and women disempowerment. Enabling women and girls to decide freely for themselves whether and when they have children, and how many, underpins all areas of their empowerment. It is also a key to reducing rapid population growth.
The EU’s main instrument for health sector support is through bilateral aid (EUR 1.5 billion/2014-2020) for which priorities are set together with the Government concerned and other partners. Support to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Supplies programme (EUR 20 million/2016-2017) will enable 24 million additional women and girls to use voluntary modern contraception by 2020 as part of the global Family Planning 2020 effort to reach 120 million by 2020.
Sexual and reproductive health and rights, including family planning, are also an integral part of commitments to gender equality as reflected in the Gender Action Plan in EU external relations (2016-2020). To deliver the Gender Action Plan objectives, EUR 100 million under the EU general budget has been committed for the period 2016-2020 to improve the lives of girls and women through the Development Cooperation Instrument, while other relevant actions are mainstreamed through other EU programmes.