Haiti boosts health and education in the past decade, says new UNDP report

Jun 25, 2014

 Port-au-Prince, Haiti – Haiti has made significant progress to achieve most of the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), having reached—or almost reached—several development targets, according to a new report launched today by the Haitian Government and the UN Development Programme (UNDP).

The 2013 MDG Report Haiti a New Look (available in French) shows that the country has steadily boosted net enrollment rate in primary education from 47 percent in 1993 to 88 percent in 2011, achieving equal participation of boys and girls in education (MDG 2). Haiti has also halved the number of underweight children under five years old (MDG 1) three years ahead of the 2015 deadline.

In spite of the devastating 2010 earthquake which killed at least 200,000 people—including 30 percent of Haitian civil servants—the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rose from US$1,548 per capita (PPP) in 2009 to $1,602 per capita in 2012, with extreme poverty stabilizing at 24 percent in 2012, according to the new Haiti MDG report.

The country made notable progress in health indicators, with infant mortality decreasing 44 percent since 1990, faster than the global average (MDG 4), according to the new Government of Haiti-UNDP report. The number of pregnant women having at least one antenatal visit rose from 68 percent in 1990 to 90 percent in 2010 contributing significantly to reduce maternal mortality (MDG 5).

Moreover, nearly 65 percent of households now have improved access to water, compared to  36.5 percent in 1995, according to the report, which also stresses that HIV/AIDS has stabilized with a prevalence of 0.9 percent among the population aged 15-24 (MDG 6).

"The Haitian government will spare no effort to improve Haiti’s MDG achievements,” said Haitian Prime Minister Laurent S. Lamothe. “We want our children in school, our mothers to be proud, a regenerating environment, women and men who are working for a better future for their children. Our initiatives will be increasingly strengthened and we invite civil society to join us in the fight against poverty and to improve Haitians’ living conditions"

"Poverty reduction is the number one priority to the Haitian Government and its people, and the MDGs call for a concrete and coordinated action by the United Nations system and bilateral and multilateral donors to build the State’s capacity to achieve these development goals,” said Sophie de Caen, UNDP Haiti Senior Country Director. “I hope that this report will contribute to this debate and inspire a renewed effort by all stakeholders to accelerate progress by 2015 and beyond.”

Among the key obstacles to achieve the MDGs, the report highlights recurrent budgetary constraints, which also hinders public administration, as well as the difficulties to effectively coordinate key stakeholders (government, public authorities, international community and Haitian civil society).

"The Ministry of Planning and External Cooperation is making this report a strategic reference tool,” said the Secretary of State for External Cooperation (MPCE), Robert Labrousse, welcoming the “participatory and strategic nature of the report.” We will use it to design and adapt our new public policies to deliver better services to the Haitian people," Labrousse added.

Key report figures:

MDG 1:
The richest 1 percent of Haitians own the same wealth as 45 percent of the poorest population. There is a new baseline of poverty in Haiti, based on consumption: The national poverty rate is 58.6 percent, the extreme poverty rate: 24.7 percent

MDG 2: The net enrollment rate in primary education has increased steadily from 47 percent in 1993 to 88 percent in 2011

MDG 3: Women occupy more than 20 percent of government positions, but only 4.3 percent of seats in parliament.

MDG 4: The number of children vaccinated against measles increased from 25.80 percent in 1987 to 85 percent in 2013.

MDG 5: In rural areas, 75 percent of births are still without the assistance of qualified personnel in obstetrics. In urban areas, the majority of women give birth with medical assistance—nearly 60 percent.

: 46 percent of women know that HIV can be transmitted through breastfeeding; HIV/AIDS prevalence has stabilized between young Haitians aged 15-24 years, from 1 percent in 2006 to 0.9 percent in 2012.

MDG 7: 16,000 hectares of forest have been planted since 1990

MDG 8: From 2012 and 2013, the Department of the West received 34 percent of official development assistance, compared to 1 percent in Nippes and Northeast

The eight Millennium Development Goals – which range from halving extreme poverty rates to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education, all by the target date of 2015 – form a blueprint agreed to by all the world’s countries and all the world’s leading development institutions. They have galvanized unprecedented efforts to meet the needs of the world’s poorest.

Contact information

In Port-au-Prince:  
Thibaut Monnier: +509 3600 7455, thibaut.monnier@undp.org
Daniel Joseph: +50936874444, daniel.joseph@primature.ht

In New York:

Carolina Azevedo, +1 212 906 6127, carolina.azevedo@undp.org

UNDP Around the world