The Crown Prince visits Haiti
On Monday, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Haakon began a three-day visit to Haiti. The Crown Prince is travelling to Haiti in his capacity as Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Crown Prince Haakon will be accompanied by the Norwegian Minister of International Development Heikki Holmås during part of the visit. On the first day of his visit, the Crown Prince met with the President of Haiti, Michel Joseph Martelly, and Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe.
Haiti was struck by a devastating earthquake in January 2010. The Crown Prince will be visiting several projects launched by UNDP with support from Norway to assist in the rebuilding effort and promote development in Haiti.
Crown Prince Haakon attended a reception hosted by UNDP in Port-au-Prince on Monday evening . In his speech he drew attention to important milestones that have been achieved in the recovery process after the catastrophic earthquake:
On this visit, my focus is on the progress being made by the Haitian people with the support of international partners, to get Haiti up and running again. This progressed is evident.
The joint United Nations Debris Management Programme has recently reached an important milestone with 800 ,000 cubic metres of debris removed in Port-au-Prince and its surroundings since its launch in September 2010. ( )These renovated outdoor spaces mean that today, Haitian families can safely meet for leisurely strolls and children have the spaces in which to play safely. These initiatives have generated temporary jobs for thousands of people who faced unemployment as a result of the earthquake. It is great to see the impact of these projects on the communities and how it has contributed to making their lives better.
Crown Prince Haakon was appointed Goodwill Ambassador for UNDP in 2003. In this capacity he has carried out field visits to Botswana, Tanzania, Cambodia, Sierra Leone, Guatemala, Burundi and Mongolia.
In his work on behalf of the organisation, the Crown Prince has focused special attention on the UN Millennium Development Goals – the eight goals that the international community has committed itself to achieving by 2015. He has given talks in Norway and abroad on the importance of ensuring that people living in poverty are given access to fundamental services such as education, legal assistance and health care as well as clean energy.
Congratulations are presented today from His Majesty King Harald to His Excellency Mr Egils Levits, President of the Republic of Latvia.
World Heritage at Vega
In 2004, UNESCO inscribed the Vega Archipelago on the World Heritage List. Today His Royal Highness The Crown Prince was in attendance to open the new Vega Archipelago World Heritage Centre – Norway’s first authorised centre of its kind.