Helping Madagascar achieve a “demographic dividend”
ANTANANARIVO – The US government, together with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), is helping Madagascar achieve a “demographic dividend”.
A demographic dividend is economic growth derived from changes in the age structure of a population, primarily when the share of a country’s working-age population is greater than the share of its working-age citizens. she supports.
As Madagascar’s large young population grows and its birth rate slows, the country has an opportunity to make key investments in areas such as health, education, employment and governance that can enable it to to follow the development path of many of its Asian neighbors to the east. and become a middle-income country.
A high-level conference on June 20 – sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and attended by senior government officials and international donors – explored the nature of the democratic dividend and the challenges and opportunities for the to chase.
“The demographic dividend contributes not only to the development of a country, but also to the well-being of its families and communities,” said US Chargé d’Affaires Tobias Glucksman in his keynote address. “The combined effects of family planning with investments in education and the economy produce a [significant] increase in gross domestic product.
Madagascar unveiled a democratic dividend “roadmap” in 2019 that identified 28 “pillars of emergence” to spur growth. In 2020, the government of Madagascar is committed to taking further action, prioritizing the dividend as a means to reduce inequality and poverty, overcome food insecurity and improve living conditions across the country. country.
The June 20 conference was hosted by USAID Health Policy More project, which since 2016 has supported Madagascar’s pursuit of the demographic dividend through training, the establishment of an interministerial working group and the development of the national dividend roadmap. USAID is further supporting Madagascar’s efforts to achieve the dividend through $16 million a year in family planning funds, as well as other investments in the health and economic sectors.
Among the commitments made at the conference, government ministers in Madagascar pledged to integrate the activities outlined in the country’s dividend roadmap into their institutions’ annual work plans.
The United States stands side by side with Madagascar as “mpirahalahy mianala” to help improve the health and well-being of the Malagasy people. As the largest national donor to the health sector in Madagascar, the U.S. government in 2021 provided $85.5 million to fund USAID health projects for the country.
These projects reduce maternal and child mortality in Madagascar, provide access to clean water and sanitation, protect communities against malaria, improve access to family planning, ensure a reliable healthcare supply chain health supplies and medicines, and strengthen the country’s national community health policy.