Northern Punjab, urban Sindh people more prosperous than rest of country: report

Published: June 20, 2016
Cars move past Atrium Mall and Cinemas in Karachi, Pakistan, May 17, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

Cars move past Atrium Mall and Cinemas in Karachi, Pakistan, May 17, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

People living in cities of northern Punjab and urban Sindh are more prosperous compared to those living in rest of the country, Pakistan’s first ever official report on multidimensional poverty revealed on Monday.

The report launched by the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform in Islamabad details the country’s official Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) which was earlier published in the Economic Survey of Pakistan 2015-16, said a statement issued by the United Nations Development Programme.

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According to the report, Pakistan’s MPI’s have showed a sharp decline, with national poverty rates falling from 55 per cent to 39 per cent from 2004 to 2015.

The report, however, points out that nearly 39 per cent people in the country still live in multidimensional poverty, with the highest rates in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) and Balochistan.

“Over two-thirds of people in Fata (73%) and Balochistan (71%) live in multidimensional poverty. Poverty in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) stands at 49%, Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B) and Sindh at 43%, Punjab at 31% and Azad Jammu and Kashmir at 25%,” it added.

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Further, the urban areas of the country are more prosperous as compared to the rural areas with a poverty ratio of 9.3% and 54.6% in urban and rural areas respectively.

“There are severe differences between districts: Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi have less than 10 per cent multidimensional poverty, while Qila Abdullah, Harnai and Barkhan (all in Balochistan) have more than 90 per cent poverty.”

The MPI uses a broader concept of poverty than income and wealth alone. It reflects the deprivations people experience with respect to health, education and standard of living, and is thus a more detailed way of understanding and alleviating poverty.

The report also found that the decrease in multidimensional poverty was slowest in Balochistan, while poverty levels had actually increased in several districts in Balochistan and Sindh during the past decade.

“Deprivation in education contributes the largest share of 43% to MPI followed by living standards which contributes nearly 32% and health contributing 26%,” the communique said.

Pakistan’s economic output rising at healthy pace

These findings further confirmed that social indicators are very weak in the country, even where economic indicators appear healthy.

“The reduction of multidimensional poverty is one of the core objectives of Pakistan’s Vision 2025,” Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Ahsan Iqbal said while addressing the launching ceremony of the report.

“Inclusive and balanced growth, which benefits everyone and especially the marginalised communities, is the government’s priority and essential for promoting harmony in the society,” he added.

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Reader Comments (10)

  • Ali
    Jun 20, 2016 - 5:39PM

    It’s easy to understand that the situation in Rural Sindh is due to complete lack of good governance by PPP. After the passing of 18th amendment, Sindh government has every single fund at it’s disposal, but they are not being used for public welfare and instead going into Zardari’s pockets. KP and Punjab/ AJK are performing better due to good governance. Balochistan suffered from multi dimensional insurgency for the past 10 years which halted alot of development there, but happy to see that under current leadership and CPEC, inshallah the situation in balochistan after 5 years will be significantly better and much improved than now. thats a fair assessment. For FATA, currently the army has launched over 100 welfare projects not only to resettle to IDPs but to also improve the standard of living there.Recommend

  • London Banker
    Jun 20, 2016 - 5:51PM

    PTI must work tirelessly to ensure that the dark orange areas of KPK (Upper Dir, SWAT and Kohistan) are swiftly changed to blues and then greens. We have full trust that the KPK government can achieve this. The speed at which KPK is progressing should very soon reverse the early gains made by other provinces.Recommend

  • SAK
    Jun 20, 2016 - 8:22PM

    “Inclusive and balanced growth, which benefits everyone and especially the marginalised communities, is the government’s priority and essential for promoting harmony in the society,” he added.

    What a joke by the minister, that is why money is being spent in urban rich centres like Lahore and Islamabad for projects which are good to have but are they really needed.Recommend

  • abood
    Jun 20, 2016 - 8:33PM

    @london baker.Seem that you r talking about kpk which you have in your dreams or the one form khans dharna.Now lets have a reality check its gone worse and is turning out to be the worse ever manged.i ask you to wake up and just not follow a cult.Recommend

  • Whatacountry
    Jun 20, 2016 - 9:18PM

    This is a solid evidence of favourtism by Nawaz Sharif for his brother’s Province.Recommend

  • Common Guy
    Jun 21, 2016 - 12:02AM

    When I walk out in the roads of Lahore,I see 70-80% young guys driving cars like Mercedes,BMW,Toyota Prius,etc,which costs Rs.25-60 lacs (they also have to pay for its maintenance and petrol).And they keep changing their cars with new trends.Whenever a new car emerges,you will see that car everywhere in Lahore.Can you really afford these luxury cars easily in Haq Halal in Pakistan?
    I feel very blessed that my parents earns in Haq Halal.My father is a senior officer.But we can’t even afford a car costing Rs.8 lacs at this moment,because my father has to pay for my studies,and we don’t have our own home either.We have two neighbours.Both of them are junior than my father in reputation,but they both have over 1 crore in their bank accounts.Only their cars costs over Rs.60 lacs.They are only able to do this because they earns bribery.So,if people in Lahore are getting rich,they are using wrong means to get there.I live in Lahore,so I can’t comment about Karachi or Islamabad.Recommend

  • London Banker
    Jun 21, 2016 - 12:32AM

    Just the fact that you probably voted and keep voting in the same faces for over 2 decades despite lack of performance is enough to let everyone here decide who the real cult follower is.

    I did laugh at London “Baker” though. Recommend

  • Raisani
    Jun 21, 2016 - 1:05AM

    I have no other choice, but to agree with you cent percent. You spoke the reality.Recommend

  • Malik
    Jun 21, 2016 - 3:34AM

    First of all in Northern Punjab many seats were won by PTI. Secondly i am from Northern Punjab and we are hard workers with above average education levels. Our abilities are bringing us out of The poverty. But some people are too ethnically biased and they attribute your success to some form of favors to discredit you.Recommend

  • abood
    Jun 21, 2016 - 3:06PM

    @london banker.well i voted pti in 2013 and we are disappointed by the lies of pti members and imran khan.why not visit KPK once and see it yourself and than think what was promised to us and what we got .i didnt vote pmln but this time in 2018 i will for sure vote for them and alot of others will do it too in kpk because we are fedup of pti .All they did was make the girls wear dupatas in the books for grade 1 to 5.Thats there achievment

    For the baker .take it as a typing mistake.Recommend

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