6 Eradicate extreme hunger and poverty

Where we are

 Photo credit: NARI
Photo credit: UNDP PNG

Poverty in PNG has been measured in terms of proportion of population under the poverty line, depth of poverty, share of the poorest quintile in national consumption and income inequality. Similarly, hunger is measured by underweight births as percentage of total births and underweight children below the age of 5 years.

Proportion of Population under the Poverty Line:Official figures on poverty in PNG have not yet been published. Most of the people in the South Pacific Region, including PNG feel that poverty should be defined in terms of “poverty of opportunity” rather than income/consumption poverty. According to an Independent Household Survey (IHS), 30.2% of the population was under the poverty line in 1996. The National MDG Progress Report 2010 has projected that the proportion of population below the poverty line in 2015will be 27%.

Progress between 1990 and 2010 towards achieving the national poverty target is given in the table below. The table shows that PNG is likely to achieve the Medium Term Development Strategy (MTDS) 2005-2010 (national) target on poverty, which is 27 percent for 2015. However, it is unlikely to achieve the global target.

Table: Progress between 1990 and 2010 towards achieving the national poverty target

National

Indicators

Most recent measure

Projected to1

National Target 2015

Value

Year

Source/Comments

1990

2010

2015

% below poverty line

30.2

1996

1996 IHS. Using lower poverty line and headcount measure

30.0

28.0

27.0

27.0

Poverty gap ratio

9.1

1996

1996 IHS. Incidence x depth of poverty

9.0

9.0

9.0

8.0

Share (%) poorest quintile

4.5

1996

1996 HIS. Relating to national consumption

4.5

4.5

4.5

4.0

Gini Coefficient

0.51

1996

1996 HIS

0.50

0.50

0.50

0.46

Note       1: Projected according to “no change scenario”

Income Inequality:Income inequality, as represented by Gini Coefficient is very high in PNG. It was 0.51 in 1996 according to IHS. The national target for Gini Coefficient is 0.46 for 2015. It is estimated that the GiniCofficient will be 0.50 in 2015.

Underweight births as percentage of total births:In 2008, 10% of the births were underweight. It is estimated that this proportion will remain the same in 2015.

Underweight children below the age of 5 years:The proportion of underweight children below the age of 5 years was 24% in 2008. The projected value for this proportion is 17% for 2015.

The underweight figures reveal that PNG will not be able to achieve the global target on hunger by half by 2015.

1.29 years
remaining
until 2015

1990 2015
Targets for MDG1
  1. Reduce by half the proportion of people living on less than a dollar a day
    • Proportion of population below $1 (PPP) per day
    • Poverty gap ratio
    • Share of poorest quintile in national consumption
  2. Achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all, including women and young people
    • Growth rate of GDP per person employed
    • Employment-to-population ratio
    • Proportion of employed people living below $1 (PPP) per day
    • Proportion of own-account and contributing family workers in total employment
  3. Reduce by half the proportion of people who suffer from hunger
    • Prevalence of underweight children under-five years of age
    • Proportion of population below minimum level of dietary energy consumption