United Nations Development Programme


UNDP in Africa


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African Economic Conference 2013: Call for Papers, Submissions June 24-August 30


MDG 2013

Country Offices

Poverty Reduction and the MDGs

situation analysis
On gender equality in education, countries such as Botswana and Rwanda have met their enrollment targets
On gender equality in education,
countries like Rwanda and Botswana have
fulfilled their enrollment targets

Over the past decade, Sub-Saharan Africa’s impressive economic performance has resulted in marginal poverty reduction, with the proportion of people living on less than US$ 1.25 a day decreasing from 56.5 percent in 1990 to 47.5 percent in 2008.


Africa also boasts a mixed record on the Millennium Development Goals (MDG), the eight internationally-agreed targets which aim to reduce poverty, hunger, maternal and child deaths, disease, inadequate shelter, gender inequality and environmental degradation by 2015.


Africa has sustained progress toward several MDGs and is on track to achieve the following targets by 2015: universal primary education; achieving gender parity at all levels of education; reducing HIV/AIDS prevalence among 15-24 year olds; increasing the proportion of people with access to antiretroviral drugs; and enhancing the proportion of women in national parliaments.


Other targets are unlikely to be met. These include reducing child mortality, improving maternal health, slowing down the loss of biodiversity and achieving full and productive employment. Other targets, such as access to safe drinking water and reducing hunger, will only be partially met if efforts are not stepped up.

UNDP's mission and work on the ground

Together with the United Nations and a host of international partners, UNDP has been supporting African countries to identify key drivers of progress, as well as mobilize the required support and financing to achieve the MDGs.


UNDP helps African countries to collect, analyze and integrate poverty-related data into their development plans. With UNDP support, dozens of MDG needs assessments have been conducted in Sub-Saharan African countries and the results were used to formulate development and poverty reduction strategies that are consistent with the MDGs.


We also lead global and regional efforts to share knowledge on the MDGs.  Since 2010, for example, UNDP has co-produced with UNECA, the AU and AfDB a report that monitors progress toward the MDGs at the continental level. The report identifies and analyzes country-level evidence on what works and what doesn’t.


Through an initiative known as the MDG Acceleration Framework (MAF), UNDP also helps African countries to identify bottlenecks and practical solutions so they can accelerate progress. Through this initiative for example, UNDP is helping Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali and Niger to plan and implement large-scale investments in the area of food security.

Read more about UNDP's work on the Millennium Development Goals in Africa

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