Brazil vows to fulfill millennium development goals before 2015

By Xinhua,

Rio De Janeiro : Brazil has pledged to fulfil the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) of reducing malnutrition and infant mortality before the deadline of 2015.

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Brazil will achieve the target of lowering child mortality rate by two-thirds and maternal mortality by three-quarters as the country promised under the MDGs, President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said Monday during his weekly radio show “Breakfast with the President”.

The MDGs are eight development targets that 189 member countries of the United Nation have agreed to try to achieve by the year 2015. The goals range from halving extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education by the target year.

During his show, Lula also mentioned about a study report released by the health ministry last month.

Lula quoted a health ministry report to say that Brazil has reduced chronic malnutrition among children aged 0-5 by 46 percent nationwide and by 74 percent in the poorest northeastern regions.

The child mortality rate was lowered to 22 in every 1,000 live births in 2006 from 39 in every 1,000 live births in 1996, which means a reduction of 43.5 percent, the president said.

The study also showed the proportion of women without access to prenatal care fell from 31.9 percent in 1996 to 3.6 percent in 2006 in Brazilian rural areas, and from 8.6 percent to 0.8 percent in urban areas.

Lula said the figures showed that an increase in the population with access to drinking water, basic sanitation, public health care, prenatal medical care and child vaccination.

“I think the 21st century will be the century in which the poor will have rights to housing, education, three meals a day, leisure time and culture,” said Lula. “I am convinced we are on the right track.”