Speech by Mr. Arthur Erken, UNFPA Representative in Viet Nam at the Signing Ceremony on Mobifone/UNFPA Collaboration on Rockstorm7

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Date: 4 December  2014    
Event: Signing Ceremony on Mobifone/UNFPA Collaboration on Rockstorm7        
Venue: Mobifone Building, Duong Dinh Nghe street, Ha Noi

Mr. Nguyen Dinh Chien, Deputy General Director of Mobifone;
Representatives from Mobifone and media;
Good afternoon to you all.

I am really honored to be here today to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Mobifone to team up together during the Rockstorm concert series. It's great to know that RockStorm was awarded Music Devotion Award 2013 and proceeding from ticket sales have been donated to Operation Smile and Foundations for Poor Students and Viet Nam's Youth Union.

Ladies and gentlemen,
Viet Nam has entered a period of golden population, recording the highest proportion of young people ever in the country's history. This provides a unique economic opportunity for the country’s development, but also creates challenges. Young people aged 10-25 make up nearly 40 per cent of the Viet Nam’s total population.

While today Vietnamese young people are generally healthier and have better education, their sexual and reproductive health is largely overlooked. Young people still lack sufficient information and life skills related to reproductive health and sexuality. This leaves them vulnerable to high-risk behavior and ill-health outcomes, including unintended pregnancies, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), HIV, sexual abuse and gender-based violence.

Sexuality education at schools remains limited. Certain groups, such as young migrants and ethnic minority youth, still have only limited access to SRH information and services. One-third of Vietnamese young people continue to face barriers when trying to access reproductive health information and services, such as contraception.  

Therefore, the collaboration between Mobifone and UNFPA during the Rockstorm7 in six cities and provinces of Hue, Da Nang, Bien Hoa, Ho Chi Minh city, Can Tho and Ha Noi from 6 December 2014 to 10 January 2015 is an innovative approach to promote healthy life styles and to engage young people on issues related to sexual and reproductive health. And we know that we can reach young people through music, hence our eagerness to partner with Mobifone on Rockstorm 7!

Distinguished guests,
UNFPA works with the Government and other development partners to find innovative ways to assist Viet Nam in securing the health, development and human rights of young people. We are committed to delivering a world where every young person’s potential is fulfilled – where their human rights are respected and their diversity is celebrated.

UNFPA welcomes this kind of initiative from Mobifone and stand ready to support it. We  are eager to partner with you to facilitate and advance this partnership.

Thank you very much for your attention. I wish you all good health, happiness and success.

Xin cam on!