Tuesday, January 05, 2010

The fruits of war

I heard this on the world service this morning (insomnia bites), regarding Afghanistan:
...officially, unemployment is about 40%, though it is probably far higher than that; of those who do have a job in Parwan, 45% earn less than one dollar a day; chronic malnutrition for children under five across Afghanistan is 54%.
Now, I tried to find out what the time series on malnutrition is in Afghanistan, but find there are no recent stats. Over half of children are severely malnourished. 1 in 5 will die before reaching five years.

Stats for the whole world can be found here (just found this Excel file which indicates Afghan child mortality is barely unchanged since 1990). The world stats are a tale of misery, with many of the neighbouring countries reaching rates of over 50% under nourishment.

The BBC though, presents us with this factoid:
And perhaps most surprising of all, on a UN scale of human development indicators, Afghanistan has slipped from 117th in the world, to 181st - second from the bottom - since the Taliban were ousted.

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