Human Development Index lags behind peers: UNDP
March 27, 2013 at 14:17
THE GROWTH of the Philippines’ Human Development Index (HDI) in 2012 lags behind that of other Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries, according to the United Nations Development Program’s (UNDP) 2013 Human Development Report.
Despite attaining an HDI of 0.654 in 2012, higher than that of Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar, the country’s score for both life expectancy and Gross National Income (GNI) per capita were lower compared to certain ASEAN countries, such as Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam.
Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan said the country’s substantial gains can only be looked at in context with its neighbors in the region.
The HDI uses life expectancy at birth in measuring the health dimension, mean years of schooling and expected years of schooling for the education dimension, and GNI per capita was factored in for the living standards dimension.
Mr. Balisacan explained that life expectancy in the Philippines was not doing well compared to specific neighboring countries, Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam, at 69.0, and below the East Asia and the Pacific average of 72.7.
In terms of education, the country only fared better in terms of mean years of schooling with 8.9, higher than Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam, while lagging behind all these countries in expected years of schooling with 11.7, similarly lower than the average of 11.8. GNI per capita for the country stood at US$3,752, higher only than that of Vietnam, and much lower than the East Asia average of US$6, 874. However, if the HDI is computed to account for inequality, Mr. Balisacan explained that the HDI in certain countries may actually be lower.