SA to host International Population Conference

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

The latest population research and pressing global and regional population issues will take centre stage when South Africa hosts the International Population Conference in October, said Statistics South Africa (Stats SA).

“Research on South Africa and the continent’s challenges of poverty, population, health, economic growth and policy interventions to advance development in the region, are some of the issues to be discussed at the International Population Conference (IPC),” said Stats SA on Wednesday.

Other issues on the agenda include population and policy challenges in Africa, HIV and Aids and sexually transmitted diseases, non-communicable diseases, health and mortality, the challenge of producing skills for a 21st century African labour force, and challenges in overcoming poverty, inequality and vulnerability.

Experts will converge in Cape Town, for the weeklong conference, the first in the 88-year history of the conference to be held in sub-Saharan Africa. The conference will run from 29 October to 4 November.

Statistician-General Dr Pali Lehohla said the conference will help refocus the attention of political leaders on the continent to population and development issues.

“Hosting the conference on sub-Saharan African soil will be an opportunity to re-energise the discourse of the role and integration of the population variables in national development agendas in the region,” said Lehohla.

The IPC, said Lehohla, will strengthen demographic training in South Africa and offer international population scientists the opportunity to assess the results of the 2010 Round of Censuses, in which more than 40 African countries participated, and make recommendations that will benefit these countries.

“Addressing population dynamics and harnessing the demographic dividend are high on the development agenda in Africa,” said Dr Julita Onabanjo, Director of the UN Population Fund in East and Southern Africa, adding that the conference will help improve demographic outcomes of development efforts on the continent.

It is expected that 2 000 population scientists, policymakers, civic organisations and government leaders from around the world will hold talks on the latest population research and debate pressing global and regional population issues.

Stats SA said the approximately 4 572 submissions received from 131 countries were indicative of the wealth of knowledge that will be shared among the experts from different parts of the world.

Stats SA, which is well renowned among the international statistics and demography fraternity, will host the conference on behalf of South Africa. –


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