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General of the Armed Forces Herilanto RAVELOHARISON, Minister of Economy and Planning and Mr. Mamadou DICKO, Representative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in Madagascar, this afternoon, signed the Country Programme Action Plan (CPAP) of the 7th Cooperation Programme between the Government of Madagascar and UNFPA for the period 2015-2019. Several members of the government, UN agencies representatives, and other guests attended the ceremony. 

The Country Programme Action Plan (CPAP) was developed through a participatory process under the Ministry of Economics and Planning. This programme is based on the recommendations of the evaluation of the 6th programme, the priorities of the new "General State Policy," the National Development Plan (NDP), the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) for the period 2015-2019 and UNFPA's Strategic Plan for the period 2014-2017. 

The Seventh Cooperation Programme targets the reduction of poverty targeting women and young adolescents, particularly those living in rural areas, particularly through the reduction of maternal and neonatal mortality while taking into account the country's socio-cultural factors

The programme is structured around four priorities that aim to (i) improve access to quality and integrated sexual and reproductive health services; (ii) increasing youth access to information, sex education and services; (iii) preventing/responding to gender-based violence; (iv) making the data available to implement effective evidence-based programmes. 

The Minister of Economy and Planning and the UNFPA Representative signed the Cooperation Document (CPAP 2015- 2019) for USD 74.5 million, including USD 27 million in own resources and USD 47.5 million to be mobilized. "The context in which we are approaching this 7th programme of cooperation between Madagascar and UNFPA is marked by many challenges. But by joining forces, I am convinced that we can improve the lives of people, especially those living in remote areas," said Mr. Mamadou DICKO, UNFPA Representative in Madagascar. The Minister, for his part, underlined: "And I dare to affirm that the action plans of the Partners of Madagascar in general, and of UNFPA in particular, are aligned with development challenges, strategic orientations, with the vision of a modern Madagascar and prosperous.”

In order to optimize the impact of the programme and in consultation with partners, special attention will be paid in the first phase of the programme to three regions of the South, namely Atsimo Andrefana, Vatovavy Fitovinany and Androy. These are areas of convergence of the actions of the United Nations Agencies. This will allow the agencies involved to strengthen their collaboration in order to support the country in improving the living conditions of the populations, particularly the most vulnerable. 

During this ceremony, UNFPA also signed the work plans for the year 2015 with the ministries in charge of their implementation. These include the Ministry of Economy and Planning, the Ministry of Youth and Sports, the Ministry of Public Health and the Ministry of Population, Social Protection and the Promotion of Women.