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25 SEPTEMBER 2008
RP WILL MEET 2005 MDG TARGET, PGMA ASSURES UN
NEW YORK—President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo committed to the United Nations that the Philippines will meet the 2015 target date of achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The President, who was the first head of state to deliver a statement during the high level meeting on 25 September at the UN, emphasized that the Philippines has made solid gains in reducing poverty and hunger.
''Our pro-poor agenda has been at the center of our poverty alleviation efforts. Early on, we incorporated our commitment under the MDG in our administration's Medium-Term Development Plan, thus we committed ourselves to allocate the resources needed in these areas,'' the President stressed.
This, she said, is because the Philippine government complies with the ''universal dream'' of a better life for all the people. As a result, the President said that at the rate extreme poverty and malnutrition are declining, the Philippines will be able to meet the 2015 MDG target.
The President said this target is achievable despite the present global economic slowdown and soaring prices of oil and food because of the economic reforms put in place that resulted in an improved economy.
''Against the backdrop of this turmoil, however, we remain optimistic that the structural reforms we have made at home will allow us to overcome the external shock abroad,'' the President said.
She stressed that the Philippines will emerge from these global challenges due to the greater self-reliance strategy adopted by the government.
This strategy includes the diversification of the export market, greater use of renewable and indigenous sources of energy, and ensuring steady supply of food, especially of rice, and measures to increase food production.
But the President stressed that the Philippines still needs the support of developed countries.
''But I am not here to fool myself or anyone else. I am a realist and we cannot be alone. We need the help of developed countries more than ever. We call on donor nations to help developing nations meet their MDGs on time,'' the President said.
''We need UN as never before. We need international cooperation as never before,'' she stressed ''We are all in this boat together... no one is immune,'' she added.
She urged all UN member states to help implement the Comprehensive Framework of Action that will allow the achievement of food security through policies, technology and investments.
She urged all nations to remain firm in resolving the gaps in achieving a world free from poverty and hunger.
''We must always remember to put a face on poverty and a face on the poor,'' the President said, adding that dramatic progress can be achieved if there is unity and cooperation among nations.###
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