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LSB, UNFPA further strengthen production, use of vital statistic data in Laos

Timely and updated vital statistics data on births, deaths, marriages, divorces is a prerequisite to socio-economic planning and informed decision making.

Individuals having their vital events recorded can secure legal identity, enabling them to exercise their civil rights.

To harness vital statistics in Laos, the United Nations Population (UNFPA) and the Lao Statistic Bureau (LSB) convened stakeholders for strengthened collaboration in producing updated vital statistics aligned with international standards.

The meeting was chaired by Head of LSB Phonsaly Souksavath, the co-chair, Ms. Mariam A. KHAN, UNFPA Representative to the Lao PDR.

In her opening remarks, Head of LSB Phonsaly Souksavath emphasized the importance of vital statistics, “civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) system in Laos is not comprehensive yet. So, there is a need to establish a quality CRVS system aligned with the international standards to fully support planning and decision-making, especially the 9th NSEDP as well as sectoral and provincial plans.”

This consultation meeting was a first step taken following the dissemination of the results of the regional situational assessment of national vital statistics commissioned by the UNFPA regional office in Asia Pacific during 2021.

The UN Resident Coordinator ai, reiterated the UN’s whole-of-system approach of support to the development of Laos’ Civil Registration and Vital Statistics, “the realization of the shared vision to get everyone in the picture will depend on : 1) Universal registration in all the provinces; 2) Full legal documents; and 3) Comprehensive vital statistics based on civil registrations. The United Nations in the Lao PDR stands ready to work closely together with different line ministries to implement the comprehensive, multi-sectoral national CRVS strategy 2016 -2025,” she said.

Civil Registration and Legal identity through registration of birth, marriage, divorce and death impact governance, health, political representation, social protection, legal identity, and economic inclusion.

UNFPA leads the coordination of UN support on CRVS to the Government. Recently, UNFPA facilitated the participation of Lao Statistics Bureau (LSB) and concerned ministries in 2nd Ministerial Conference on Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (CRVS) in Asia and the Pacific to mark the mid-point in the Asia-Pacific CRVS Decade (2015 – 2024) and the shared vision of “getting everyone in the picture”.

UNFPA Representative to the Lao PDR Mariam A. Khan said “UNFPA takes a life-course approach to civil registration and vital statistics that begins with birth, continues through to death, and includes marriage and divorce; combined with a Population Data Systems Approach to CRVS strengthening. The holistic approach of integrated population data systems, includes CRVS, household surveys and censuses.”She further added that “this technical cooperation on CRVS work will inform the preparation of 5th PHC 2025, LSIS III where the gaps are and how we can fill the gaps through upcoming PHC and LSIS III to support the Government to have a better plan and programme to improve the CRVS.”

Source: Lao News Agency