|2011 Human Development Report Formally Launched in Zimbabwe|
Harare, 20 February, 2012: Although still low, Zimbabwe’s overall Human Development Index (HDI) performance is on the rebound, with relative improvement in health, education and income over the past couple of years, the UN Resident Coordinator/UNDP Resident Representative (UN RC / UNDP RR), Mr. Alain Noudehou, has said.
The UNDP Resident Representative was speaking at the launch of the 2011 Human Development Report (HDR), held in the capital, Harare on 20 February, 2011. The Report was formally launched by the Minister of Finance, Mr. Tendai Biti in the presence of representatives of various Government ministries, diplomatic corps, and donor partners, private sector, UN Country Team and the media.
The UNDP Resident Representative highlighted 3 key messages of the 2011 Human Development Report as follows:
In his remarks, the Minister of Finance Mr. Tendai Biti said that it is imperative for Zimbabwe to continue taking the direction of the global development tide, anchored on the theme: Sustainability and Equity: A Better Future for All. He recalled that the theme for Zimbabwe’s Short Term Emergency Recovery Programme (STERP II) and the Budget 2010 was Equitable Growth and Stability while the 2012 Budget theme is Sustaining Efficient Inclusive Growth with Jobs. This he stressed was meant “to ensure that we create a Fair Economy: Shared Economy, Shared Development and Shared Transformation.”
“ I urge all fellow countrymen, development partners and everyone of us not to dwell much on the 173 out of 187, rather concentrate on what is it that the figure is speaking to,” said Mr. Biti adding that as a country, Zimbabwe “needs to maintain the momentum which Inclusive Government machinery has gained and results will certainly come out.”
The Report, Sustainability and Equity: a Better Future for All, shows that following current trends, inequality and deteriorating environmental conditions will together pose obstacles to progress in Africa and across the globe.
As the world community prepares for the landmark June 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development in Riode Janeiro, Brazil, the Report argues that sustainability must be approached as a matter of basic social justice, for current and future generations alike.
According to the Report, Zimbabwe’s HDI value for 2011 is 0.376—in the low human development category—positioning the country at 173 out of 187 countries and territories.
Expressing the continuing commitment of the United Nations to support the government and people of Zimbabwe in addressing the country’s development challenges, Mr. Noudehou cited several issues that going forward, need special attention as Zimbabwe pursues its development aspirations. These include ensuring national ownership of the development process, investing in health, education and social protection and investing in economic development infrastructure. Others are protecting the environment and facilitating access to affordable energy, expanding human freedoms and choices, as well as ensuring accountability at all levels.
Following the launch, the Minister of Planning and Investment Promotion, Hon. Mashakada, delivered an address setting the stage for a debate among policymakers, academics and development practitioners. The well-attended, lively debate generated good feedback from the audience.
The Human Development Report is published annually by the United Nations Development Program and the Human Development Index (HDI) is a summary composite measure for assessing long-term progress in three basic dimensions of human development: a long and healthy life, access to knowledge and a decent standard of living.
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