September 9, 2005

Human development report: Mozambique ranks 168th out of 177 countries

The latest Human Development Report published by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) ranks Mozambique as 168th out of the 177 countries covered. Its figures cover the year 2003, and show some slow progress by Mozambique - the country has risen three places. The UNDP report excludes several countries where it is impossible to collect statistics, such as Afghanistan, Liberia, and Somalia. The nine countries for which statistics are available, and which are regarded as poorer than Mozambique on the human development scale are: Burundi, Ethiopia, Central African Republic, Guinea-Bissau, Chad, Mali, Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone and Niger.
The instrument used by the UNDP is the Human Development Index (HDI). This consists of three variables, each given equal weighting - life expectancy at birth, educational level (measured by the adult literacy rate, and the combined enrolment rate for primary, secondary and tertiary education), and real GDP per capita. The maximum possible value for the HDI is one. Several countries come near this - top of the UNDP list is Norway with an HDI of 0.963, followed by Iceland on 0.956, and Australia on 0.955. At the bottom is Niger with an HDI of just 0.281. The UNDP calculates Mozambique's HDI for 2003 at 0.379, a significant increase on the figure of 0.354 recorded in 2002. The first HDI calculated for Mozambique was 0.298, in 1980. (Agencia de Informacao de Mocambique, Maputo)

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