Yemen needs new strategy to meet rising population [Archives:2005/826/Business & Economy]

March 21 2005

Results of the general census show that the total population of resident Yemenis is over 19 million people, and almost two million people in the expatriation are pushing Yemen into a new strategic population policy.

This new policy should be commensurate to the population density and the realization of the goals of the sustainable development in the country.

According to preliminary indicators, there is variance in population distribution between the governorates. Taiz governorate has occupied the first place by having 2.4 million people, Hudeidah 2.1 million, Ibb 2.1 million, and the spacious governorate of Hadramout 1.03 million.

These indicators dictate on the government reconsideration of population policy, particularly since the number of males amount to more than 10 millions and the number of females are more than 9 million.

This situation requires finding development plans and services projects meeting the needs of social development according to the new census.

Specialists say Yemen needs programs for restoring balance to the track of geographical distribution of the population, in addition to facing the needs in health, education, employment areas as well as raising the status of Yemeni women.

Hence, the new population policy has to accommodate bases and scientific criteria for expansion of participation in planning and evaluation of population programs and activities in a manner harmonious with needs and requisites in their regions. This is especially so in the rural areas where they need projects and services in various areas.

Those indicators also confirm the necessity of developing sources of national income and local resources allocated for development and working for curbing the spread of unemployment.

The increasing population growth imposes on the government the drawing up of programs for families, expansion in female education and providing material, financial and human requirements for population programs. This is especially regarding the programs that help achieve reduction in matrimonial fatality, rate of infant fatality as well as raising the medium of life expectancy at birth to reach at 70 years in the year 2015, according to the Millennium Plan goals.

Specialists also believe that efforts must be joined for the establishment of active partnership between the government, the private sector, and the non-governmental organisations to take part in social and economic development. The importance of the private sector role is more apparent in evolving health and educational services and provision of job opportunities. This is because the responsibility is common with regard to the increasing population.

Results of the census also should urge to finding an environment for population information, enhancement the institutional build up capacities of concerned technical apparatuses wit statistics and creation of a complete information system on population activities and their continuous evaluation.

Thus, the results of the census have come to add more woes and concerns to the government. It has to work seriously to carry out a population policy guaranteeing the citizen's life, supply him with opportunities necessary for stability and active participation in realization of the goals of sustainable development.