I thank you, Madam President.
I also thank Dr. Natalia Kanem for her comprehensive overview of the activities of the UNFPA and how it plans to advance its three overarching priorities amidst the ongoing global challenges.
Bangladesh values her partnership with UNFPA; and we have much to show in terms of the remarkable achievements made to mainstream population management in our development discourse.
The ongoing pandemic stands to jeopardize many of those achievements. The ICPD agenda is seriously stressed.
Against this backdrop, UNFPA needs to undertake concerted and innovative effortsto put us back on track.
Let me highlight three specific points in this regard:
First,the pandemic has put our decades of achivements in education and health seriously off-track. Women and girls are disproportionately impacted. We need urgent and innovative solutions to support them better.
We encourage UNFPA to leverage digital innovations to tackle these problems. There are opportunites for enhanced UN-system wide coherrence and collaboration in this regard. There can be a comprehensive digital platform—a one-stop service—to host all agencies in program countries for rapid and enhanced service deliveries. Given the experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic, how do you plan to leverage digital tools to enhance the performance of UNFPA in the programme countries?
Second, Bangladesh has been elected the Chair of Peacebuilding Commission earlier this week for 2022. In setting out our roadmap for this year, we have placed high priority on the enhanced engagements with funds and programs in the countries under PBC’s consideration. We are aware of UNFPA’s good work to advance WPS and YPS agenda with the help of the Peacebuilding Fund. How can we collaborate more to ensure effective delivery of peacebuilding goals by UNFPA in support of national peacebuilding priorities?
Finally, we appreciate UNFPA’s success in menstrual health and hygiene. Yet, the challenges remain daunting. There are deeply entrenched norms in many societies which put barriers to women’s access to these basic facilities. How can the UNFPA collaborate more with relevant partners including the Governments and private sector to ensure menstrual health and hygiene for all? And also address the educational and access issues keeping cultural sensitivities in mind?
I thank you all.