UN-ESCWA organized an Expert Group Meeting for the preparation of the "United Nations 2007 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Report for the Arab World" in Amman, Jordan, from 26 to 27 February 2007. The meeting brought together Government officials from twelve Arab countries, representatives of the League of Arab States (LAS) and various regional youth non governmental organizations, regional experts on youth development, as well as representatives of UN agencies in the Arab region.
Seeing as the theme selected for more in-depth review and analysis of the Report is "Youth and Development", the EGM focused on the current situation and the prospects of youth in the Arab region. The major objective was to identify policies for enhancing the role of youth as active agents towards the attainment of the MDGs.
To this end, the meeting included several presentations by relevant experts, with topics ranging from gender empowerment and youth employment to youth health and educational and environmental issues. Moreover, a youth roundtable was held on the first day of the EGM where young students and youth representatives discussed main areas of concern from their perspective and the relevance of the MDGs to them. The second day mainly focused on policies to accelerate progress towards the MDGs, with presentations ranging from employment issues and economic and social development strategies to specific challenges in conflict and post-conflict countries. The presentations were followed by a discussion session entitled "Policy Outlook from a Government Perspective", in which government representatives engaged in an exchange of views on progress towards the MDGs and gave helpful suggestions and comments concerning the content of the Report.