What are the Millennium Development Goals
In September 2000, world leaders agreed a set of goals for the international community, to bring about a world in which sustaining development and eliminating poverty would have the highest priority.
These goals were based on agreements and resolutions of world conferences organised by the United Nations in the 1990s. The goals are commonly accepted as a framework for measuring "development" progress.
Click here to read the Declaration
The goals establish yardsticks for measuring results, for developing countries and rich countries alike. The first seven goals are mutually reinforcing and are directed at reducing poverty in all its forms. The eighth goal is about the means to achieve the first seven.
By the year 2015, all 191 UN member countries have pledged to achieve these goals.
|Eradicate extreme hunger and poverty.
Reduce by half the proportion of people living on less than a dollar a day.
Reduce by half the proportion of people who suffer from hunger.
|Achieve universal primary education.
Ensure that all boys and girls complete a full course of primary schooling.
|Promote gender equality and empower women.
Eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education preferably by 2005, and at all levels by 2015.
|Reduce child mortality.
Reduce by two thirds the mortality rate among children under five.
|Improve maternal health.
Reduce by three quarters the maternal mortality ratio.
|Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases.
Halt and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS.
Halt and begin to reverse the incidence of malaria and other major diseases.
|Ensure environmental sustainability.
Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes; reverse loss of environmental resources.
Reduce by half the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water.
Achieve significant improvement in lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers, by 2020.
|Develop a global partnership for development.
Develop further an open trading and financial system that is rule-based, predictable and non-discriminatory. Includes a commitment to good governance, development and poverty reduction—nationally and internationally.
Address the least developed countries’ special needs. This includes tariff- and quota-free access for their exports; enhanced debt relief for heavily indebted poor countries; cancellation of official bilateral debt; and more generous official development assistance for countries committed to poverty reduction.
Address the special needs of landlocked and small island developing States.
Deal comprehensively with developing countries’ debt problems through national and international measures to make debt sustainable in the long term.
In cooperation with the developing countries, develop decent and productive work for youth.
In cooperation with pharmaceutical companies, provide access to affordable essential drugs in developing countries.
In cooperation with the private sector, make available the benefits of new technologies—especially information and communications technologies
What is Ireland doing to promote the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals?
All Governments have pledged to achieve the goals, and to report on their activities to bring them about.
During the Irish EU Presidency, EU member countries agreed to report jointly on their efforts, by submitting their national reports to the European Commission.
For more information, see:
>> Ireland's first MDG report - December 2004
>> European Commission's first MDG report - November 2004
How are we doing?
On present trends, the goals will not be reached by 2015. In fact, in some African countries they will not be reached until the year 2147.
>> Click here to compare the goals with today's reality.