PML-N government lifted 6.2% out of poverty, says UNDP

Pakistan has lifted 6.2% of its population out of acute poverty during the previous five-year term of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N)


  • According to a recent report by UNDP, Pakistan lifted 6.2% population out of acute poverty. 
  • The incidence of multidimensional poverty in Pakistan is 38.3%.
  • However, the intensity is significantly higher at 51.7%.
  • The survey further showed that 10.8 million people were lifted out of extreme poverty in 2015-16.

According to a new report of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Pakistan successfully lifted 6.2% of its population out of acute poverty during the five-year government of Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N). The report indicates that the number of people living in multidimensional poverty stood at 38.3% in 2018.

According to the new Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI), the incidence of multidimensional poverty in Pakistan is 38.3%. However, the intensity is significantly higher at 51.7%. The said report was based on data of up to the fiscal year 2017-18.

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The index has been jointly developed by UNDP and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) at the University of Oxford. The 2019 global MPI presents data for 101 countries, covering 76 percent of the total global population.

1/3 children in Pakistan under the age of 5 years malnourished:



The survey suggested that one in every three children in Pakistan under the age of five is malnourished and suffered intra-household inequality. UNDP defines intrahousehold inequality as ”deprivation in nutrition where one child in the household is malnourished and other is not.”

In South Asia overall, 22.7% of children under age 5 experience intrahousehold inequalities particularly in deprivation in nutrition. By the end of 2017-18, the figures for people living in multidimensional poverty stood at 38.3% as compared to 44.5% in 2012-13, showing an appreciable change.

The intensity of poverty also reduced from 52.3% in 2013 to 51.7% in 2018, as the report indicated. Although missing the annual targets, the past government achieved an average 4.8% economic growth rate during its five years term.

It must be noted that MPI uses broader measures to determine poverty, like access to health care, education and overall standard of living.

Kenya and Pakistan have a similar incidence of multidimensional poverty:

The report further noted that both Pakistan and Kenya have a similar incident of multidimensional poverty. However, the inequality in education in Pakistan is double than that of Kenya.

Revealing an unfortunate affair of country’s misplaced priorities, the report stated that 41.3% of the population was deprived of education. The figures show Pakistan’s desperate need to invest in the sector.

Nearly one out of every three citizens did not have access to cooking fuel – a ratio that was 38.2% in 2013. About one-fifth did not have access to sanitation, which was less than 29.4% ratio in 2013.

Nearly 8% population lacked access to clean drinking water – better than 9.1% in 2013.

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The UNDP noted that Pakistan was successful in reducing deprivations in six out of ten indicators. 27.6% of the total population still lacked access to health facilities and 1/3 of the population did not have the quality standard of living.

Pakistan also improved on school attendance and child mortality, but the performance was still not very impressive.

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