Multidimensional Poverty in Afghanistan Affects 6/10 Children: Study

According to a study by Afghan national statistics and information authority, more than half of Afghans live in ‘multidimensional poverty’.

The report is titled “Afghanistan Multidimensional Poverty Index” and it highlighted that as children form over half the population of the country, multidimensional poverty is highest among them. Some economists call children, women and the old as “poorest of the poor”.

According to the report, 58 percent of all poor people in Afghanistan are children under 18, implying that 6 out of 10 children live in multidimensional poverty.

The study was carried out in the period 2016-2017 by Afghanistan’s National Statistics and Information Authority in collaboration with the United Nations agency for children and Oxford University.

The index takes into account the gaps in many spheres of life including health, education, living standards, employment, income and security.

The report also points out the level of multidimensional poverty in Afghanistan stands at 18.1 percent in cities and 61.1 percent in rural areas, with Badghis having the highest level of multidimensional poverty (85.5 percent) while Kabul having the least (14.7 percent).

“Investing in education for children today, especially in girls’ education, is a critical step in reducing poverty for the next generation,” said Jean Gough, UNICEF regional director.
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She also expressed that an essential component of poverty reduction is a well-functioning national social protection system, along with secure provision of social services such as health, education, nutrition and clean water.

Sabina Alkire, director of Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative, said: “NSIA has produced a rigorous, technically precise measure of multidimensional poverty, aligned to national priorities. I hope the A-MPI not only makes poverty visible, but also is used to coordinate high-impact policies.”

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