Dr. Josephine Moyo
Director, Cooperate Development and Information Sharing

On behalf of the Executive Director, 
Dr. Timothee Gandaho
Partners in Population and Development (Partners) * 

at the World Summit for Sustainable Development

Johannesburg, South Africa
30 August 2002

The Chairperson, 
Ladies and Gentlemen

Partners is privileged to be invited to make a Statement at this occasion of the World Summit in Johannesburg and I feel most honoured to deliver the Statement.

Partners in Population and Development (Partners), an inter-governmental alliance of 19 developing countries, was a established during the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo, 1994 on a very positive note as a result of success in family planning programs the 10 founder countries had celebrated then. Partners set up its Secretariat in Dhaka, Bangladesh in 1996.

Partners Mission is to:
Expand and improve South-South collaboration in the fields of Family Planning and Reproductive Health; Each Partner member will strengthen institutional capacity to undertake South-South exchange activities and rapidly expand the number of South-South training and consultative programs; Long-term collaborative arrangements will be encouraged.

Partners Vision is that South-South cooperation becomes a widely used strategy for building capacity to improve reproductive health status in developing countries as stated in the ICPD Program of Action.

Subsequently, Mr. Chairperson, the Partner countries begun to face sustainability challenges caused by general population growth, diseases of poverty, financial deprivation, inadequate access to commodities required for family planning, reproductive health and diseases of poverty such as Tuberculosis, Malaria, HIV/AIDS.

The nineteen member countries, 6 in Sub Saharan Africa, 6 in Asia, 5 in North Africa and Middle East and 2 in Latin America and the Caribbean are home to 54% of the world's population, a voice of the South that cannot be ignored. They are also home to 40% of the total global population of people living with HIV and AIDS. They constitute the highest burden of other poverty-related diseases.
However, through annual membership financial contribution, the alliance is firmly committed to address these sustainability challenges by harnessing and sharing of local knowledge, local working and documented experiences, practices, lessons, strategies and models. The awareness of the existence of local experts and other resources in developmental disciplines is high. Partners is working on a program to promote access to the experts in the South by compiling a directory and a database.

A 30 months research to understand the dynamics and economics of South-South collaboration, as an alternative approach to sustainable improvement in Reproductive Health showed that, access to the myriad local resources is constrained by multiple languages, lack of universal access to technology, inadequate communication systems, trade barriers and tariffs imposed on educational and information resources and products shared between countries. The study demonstrated that the greater the number of actors and institutions involved in South-South collaboration, the greater, cost-effective and more rewarding is the impact to both the beneficiaries and the providers. The providers become better at delivering their expertise and knowledge fore-going the need for the costly process of trial and error.

An overall strategy employed by Partners is to build the capacity of both individuals and institutions in developing countries regardless of membership status. This is done through the development of tools to stimulate documentation of local experiences, research, technical assistance, and training programs, establishing networks, social mobilization and policy dialogue. Leadership development, relevant to population and reproductive health programs is gaining momentum among Partner and other developing countries. Fellowship programs have been promoted to enhance individual skills.

Partners is grateful to Rockefeller, Hewlett, Packard and Gates Foundations, the World Bank, UNFPA, USAID, European Commission, The Department for International Development for financing their activities. The Partners Trust Fund, established in 1997, is inadequate to meet the numerous poverty related disease and population challenges of the member states. Consequently, Partners has recently launched its Endowment Fund to ensure financial sustainability for its activities.

Mr. Chairperson, it is the call from Partners in Population and Development, A South-South Initiative, to the International Community to support this resource mobilization effort.

Partners, as a member of the International Initiative on Reproductive Health Supplies (IIRHS), calls upon the International Community to particularly address and endorse the plight of poor countries in their lack of access to essential health commodities.

Partners also calls upon this World Summit to include Population and Reproductive Health in the Plan of Action.

To conclude Mr. Chairperson, Partners invites the International Community to reflect the voice of the South and local communities in addressing the issues of Poverty, Environment, Population and Sustainable Development through South-South Collaboration.

Finally, allow me to thank on behalf of Partners in Population and Development, President Thabo Mbeki and the people of South Africa for the wonderful country, hospitality and venue for the World Summit.

I thank you Mr. Chairperson, I thank you all.