As European population ages UN body suggests ways to enhance senior lives

The number of elderly people in Europe is on the rise and responding to their changing needs is one of the biggest challenges that governments have to face this century, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) said today.In Europe, there are now 4.4 people of working age for every person aged 65 years or older, UNECE said. By 2025, there will 3 working-age people for every elderly person, and by 2050 it will be 2 working-age people for every elderly person.To help prepare policymakers for the population change, UNECE is launching a series of four policy briefs on aging: mainstreaming ageing; gender equality, work and old age; older persons as consumers; participation and integration of older persons.Among the recommendations is a plan to realize a “society for all ages,” for which countries will need to enhance older persons’ participation in social, political and economic life and improve their access to transport, appropriate housing and cultural activities. Another brief recommends differences when drafting pension laws given that elderly women in UNECE countries live longer than men and have little income after their partners’ deaths. 20 November 2009The number of elderly people in Europe is on the rise and responding to their changing needs is one of the biggest challenges that governments have to face this century, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) said today. read more

EU hails progress in Sri Lanka ready to move forward

“As we share the joy of inaugurating the Delegation’s new home, we also look to the future together with the people of Sri Lanka. We stand in solidarity to embrace our shared vision and commitment to safeguarding our common principles and values: democracy, the rule of law, human rights and fundamental freedoms, respect for human dignity, the principles of equality and solidarity, and the respect for international law,” he said.He said the new EU building opens up a new space for cooperation, and the EU is looking forward to welcoming Sri Lanka and the Maldives Governments, international and regional organisations, civil society organisations and all those with interest in the European Union to its new workplace. (Colombo Gazette) “Today is my first day of a short but I hope fruitful dialogue with the Government of Sri Lanka and the civil society. This visit will be an occasion to strengthen our bilateral ties through the signing of two Financing Agreements with the Government of Sri Lanka amounting in total to 38 million euros. These will restart our full cooperation to provide Trade related assistance and to support for rural development in the poorest and most vulnerable districts of the Central and Uva Provinces,” he said.He says the European Union has emerged as a key partner in Sri Lanka across a range of fields including development, climate change, trade, aid to displaced populations. Speaking at the opening of the new EU office in Colombo today Neven Mimica said that over the past year, the European Union and Sri Lanka have turned a new page of partnership and have rejuvenated their relations. Neven Mimica, who is on a visit to Sri Lanka, will hold a series of high-level meetings, including with the President of Sri Lanka, the Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and other senior members of the Government. The Commissioner will also meet with civil society representatives, including those working on women’s empowerment, child rights, disappeared people and media freedom. The European Union says the Government of Sri Lanka has made significant advances since the presidential elections held in January 2015 to restore democratic governance, initiate a process of national reconciliation and re-engage with the international community.The EU Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica said he will be discussing with the Sri Lanka authorities the most appropriate way to support the new political momentum initiated by the new Government in 2015 in the years to come. read more