The Jakarta Post
Indonesia is among the top 10 countries showing the most progress in its development in the past decade, thanks to rapid recovery programs after the Asian financial crisis, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)’s Human Development Report (HDR) said.
Indonesia’s Human Development Index (HDI) increased by 54 percent between 1980 and 2010 as a result of a leap in life expectancy from 54 to 71 years old and income per capita rising by 180 percent to US$3,957.
UNDP resident representative, El-Mostafa Benlamlih, said the achievements placed Indonesia as one of the world’s leaders in human development advances.
“This remarkable progress shows the serious commitment of the Indonesian government to improving human development in the country,” he said at the launching of the 2010 HDR titled The Real Wealth of Nations: Pathways to Human Development on Friday.
In the report’s 20th anniversary this year, the UNDP undertook a major review of progress in human development over the past four decades as well as advancing measurements of poverty and development in 135 countries.
Along with the HDI, it introduced the Multidimensional Poverty Index as a more comprehensive tool in assessing development and poverty.
UNDP’s HDR office director Jeni Klugman praised Indonesia’s rapid achievements considering that it was weighed down by political and economic turmoil in the late 1990s.
The 2010 top movers include countries that showed rapid progress in three human development indicators: health, education and income, with 1970 as the starting point.
“Indonesia comes up at number four out of 135 countries on the HDI list,” Klugman told The Jakarta Post.
The nine other top 10 countries are Algeria, China, Laos, Morocco, Nepal, Oman, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Tunisia.
Klugman, who is the lead author of the report, said what was most interesting was the fact that Indonesia did well both in income improvement and non-income improvement.
Along with Indonesia, South Korea is in the top 10 for both categories. Indonesia and South Korea are the only countries in the top 10 for both categories.
China comes up at number one for income improvement due to its rapid economic growth, but has not had rapid progress in terms of education and health over the past four decades.
“In fact, Indonesia, along with South Korea chose a path of success in progressing in a more balance way, investing in health and education, as well as in growth,” she said. (ebf)