The Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing was adopted at the United Nations Second World Assembly on Ageing held in Madrid in 2002. Subsequently, the General Assembly endorsed the Plan on December 2002 during its 57th session.
The Second World Assembly on Ageing brought together delegates from more than 160 Governments, intergovernmental institutions and NGOs to respond to the opportunities and challenges of population ageing.
The Plan responds to the opportunities and challenges of population ageing and promotes the development of a society for all ages. It calls on Governments to integrate the rights and needs of older persons into national and international, economic and social development policies. The aim is "to ensure that persons everywhere are able to age with security and dignity and to continue to participate in their societies as citizens with full rights" (para. 10).
The Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing is a practical tool to assist policymakers to focus on the key priorities associated with population ageing. It addresses a wide range of issues with implications for the lives of older people around the world including social protection, health, urbanization, labour, education, nutrition, training of carers, housing, infrastructure, and images of ageing.
The three priority directions outlined in the Plan are:
Specific recommendations designed to be adapted to the circumstances in each country are included. Furthermore, the Plan recognizes the many different stages of development and the transitions that are taking place in various regions, as well as the interdependence of all countries in a globalizing world.
In Resolution 65/182 of December 2010, the General Assembly called upon member States to further implement the Plan and mainstream the concerns of older persons into national policy agendas. On 25 May 2011, Resolution 67/5 was adopted at the 67th session of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, calling on member States to, inter alia, accelerate the implementation of the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing.