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CHAMPION OF THE DAY
Human Development Index
craters to below global average
Until 2019, Lebanon
had always outperformed
Lebanon’s Human Development Index (HDI) continued the downturn it started with the onset of the crisis and reached in 2021 its lowest value since the country’s HDI records began in 2005, according the ‘Human Development Report 2021/2022’ of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
The country’s HDI had always been higher than the global HDI average until 2020 when it dropped below that average for the first time even though the world average itself has been witnessing a concurrent downtrend and fell in 2021 back to its 2016 levels. The UNDP said in the report: “For the first time on record, the global Human Development Index (HDI) has dropped for two years in a row, taking the world back to just after the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement. Every year a few countries face declines on the HDI, but over 90 percent of countries saw their HDI value drop in either 2020 or 2021.”
Lebanon’s gross national income (GNI) per capita, an HDI component that was above the world average, reached a peak in 2010, and then started a downtrend with the outbreak of the Syrian crisis. It fell below the world average in 2017 for the first time since 1990.
Life expectancy at birth, another HDI component, also deteriorated with the crisis. It fell from 79.7 years in 2018 to 75 years in 2021.
According to the UNDP report, the world is experiencing three interacting layers of uncertainty, superimposed on ongoing development challenges. The first is associated with planetary change and its interaction with inequalities. The second consists of purposeful efforts to transition towards new methods of organizing industrial societies. The third is the intensification of political and social polarization facilitated by the way new digital technologies are being used. “This new and interacting “uncertainty complex” is unequal and universal; it can exacerbate inequalities, yet like the ongoing pandemic, it touches us all,” the UNDP said.
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Sep 20, 2022
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