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UNDP: Peru's Human Development Index up 60% in 16 years

17:37 | Lima, Nov. 19.

The Human Development Index (HDI) in Peru registered an accumulated increase of 60% between 2003 and 2019, which represents an average growth of 3% per year, Human Development Indicators Coordinator at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Francisco Santa Cruz affirmed on Tuesday.

"This performance proves a sustained interest of the governments in improving the population's quality of life," he expressed.

However, he said, there are still several territories whose potentials have not been fully exploited yet and which have gaps that must be reduced. They represent structural challenges that must be analyzed and addressed.

Adverse effect of altitude

"Behind this important growth, there are territorial differences conditioned by three factors: altitude, population concentration, and productive structure," Santa Cruz stated.

He said the district aspect allows the influence of altitude to be identified in a much greater proportion than the provincial aspect.

"Thus, when considering six altitudinal floors (high coast, low coast, high mountain range, low mountain range, high jungle, and low jungle), it has been determined that while rising in altitude, human development falls. This inverse relationship is already a challenge for the country," he commented.

"The important thing is that the (Peruvian) State has begun to respond to these challenges in order to counteract the adverse effect of altitude," the UNDP representative remarked.

Productive specialization

Likewise, the UNDP Human Development Indicators coordinator highlighted the relationship between productive specialization and human development.

"This specialization has been measured at the level of regions. Thus, in those (regions) where there is a high agricultural presence, especially of small subsistence agriculture (low specialization), there is less human development," the analyst said.

He added this is because subsistence agriculture has low productivity and generates low income.

"On the contrary, if we look at regions where the productive structure has a strong manufacturing and services presence, that means it is a more diversified economy; greater human development is generated," he added.

Mining and human development

In addition, considering that Peru is a country with great mining potential, it has been found that there is no direct relationship between the presence of this sector and human development.

"This means there are regions with high mining activity and high human development, but there are also others with high mining activity and low human development," he stated.

Another important discovery of the UNDP study is that the regions with the highest human development, such as Lima, Arequipa, Moquegua and La Libertad, are the ones with the most internal inequality, he noted.

(END) VLA/JJN/MVB

Published: 11/19/2019
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