Bangladesh moved up three spots and ranked 139th out of 188 countries in the latest global human development ratings of the United Nations Development Programme.
According to the Human Development Report 2016 launched on Wednesday, the country made the advances in the Human Development Index-2015 from the HDI-2014 in which the country was ranked 142th.
The country, however, was ranked 140th in the revised HDI for 2014.
Bangladesh’s HDI value for 2015 is 0.579, which put
the country in the medium human development category, from 0.575 in 2014, the report said.
The HDI value, however, fell to 0.412 after discounting the value for inequality, the report said, adding that overall loss in HDI due to inequality stood at 28.9 per cent. ‘As the inequality in a county increases, the loss in human development also increases,’ the report said.
Bangladesh’s progress became possible due mainly to improvement in life expectancy and an increase in gross national income in the year, it said.
The UNDP and the General Economics Division of the Planning Commission jointly arranged the launch of the report at NEC conference room at Agargoan in Dhaka.
According to the report which is published annually since 1990, Bangladesh became fifth in the South Asia region after Sri Lanka (73), Maldives (105), India (131) and Bhutan (132). Nepal (144), Pakistan (147) and Afghanistan (169) were ranked behind the country.
Norway ranked the top in the global ranking.
Bangladesh achieved a higher average annual HDI growth rate at 1.64 per cent during 1990-2015 compared to all other South Asian countries.
HDI is a measure for assessing progress in three basic dimensions — a long and healthy life, access to knowledge and access to decent standard living — of human development.
According to the report, life expectancy at birth stood at 72 years, expected schooling at 10.2 years and gross national income per capita stood at $3,341 on purchase power parity basis.
In previous report, life expectancy at birth was 71.6 years, expected schooling at 10 years and GNI per capita was $3,191.
The report for Bangladesh showed multidimensional poverty index at 0.237, population in multidimensional poverty 40.7 per cent, inequality in income 20.1 per cent, employment to population ratio 59.4 per cent, child labour 4 per cent, youth unemployment rate 11.6 per cent, homicide rate 2.8 per 1 lakh people, prison population 43 per 1 lakh people, internet users 14.4 per cent of total population of 161 million, adult literacy rate 61.5 per cent, under-five mortality rate 37.6 per 1,000 live births and public health expenditure 0.8 per cent of the GDP.
Bangladesh was also making progress in empowerment, economic activities and reproductive health of women as it stood at 119th spot in overall Gender Inequality Index out of 159 countries.
At the report launch, UNDP Human Development Report Office director Selim Jahan, also lead author of HDR-2016, made a presentation on key findings of the report.
He emphasised on addressing issues related to inequality, youth empowerment and impact of climate change on sustainable and balanced human development.
Inequality has been rising globally and Bangladesh is not out of the trend, he said.
Planning minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said that Bangladesh had shown progress in human development as the country was doing well in indicators like health, education, life expectancy at birth and per capita income.
He termed the adverse impact of climate change as the key challenge for sustainable human development.
State minister for foreign affairs Shahriar Alam, principal coordinator for SDG affairs at Prime Minister’s Office Abul Kalam Azad, GED member Shamsul Alam, UNDP country director Sudipto Mukerjee, former adviser to the caretaker government Rasheda K Choudhury, among others, spoke at the programme.
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