Magazine article UN Chronicle

Asia: Reaching Maturity; Population Programmes Start to Yield Results

Magazine article UN Chronicle

Asia: Reaching Maturity; Population Programmes Start to Yield Results

Article excerpt

Asia: reaching maturity

Population programmes start to yield results

Six of the world's 10 most populous countries are in Asia. By the year 2020 roughly half the population of the planet will live in that region.

It was in Asia that rapid population growth first became a matter of public concern and where most progress has been made, according to the Population Fund's 1986 report.

Today, population policies are firmly established in countries such as Indonesia, the Republic of Korea and Thailand, and programmes are reaching maturity and yielding results.

Although Fund assistance to Asian countries decreased from $54.4 million in 1985 to $45.4 million in 1986, it still represented as much as 40 per cent of all programme allocations.

"A good mix' in Indonesia

Indonesia, with a population of almost 164 million, has a long history of population programmes and active government intervention, according to Henna Ong, who is in charge of South and West Asia projects.

A five-year, $18 million programmer started last year will provide family planning and health services to 1.2 million industrial workers through factory clinics. It will also pay for what Ong describes as "a good mix of hospital-based family planning services, biomedical research, and information and education activities' throughout the country.

Bangladesh: a massive effort

In South-East Asia, Bangladesh is struggling to lower its total fertility rate from a high 6,15 to 4,1 by 1990. …

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