'Big strides on Millennium Development Goals achieved'

09 Jul 2013

With some of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) already met, more targets are within reach by the 2015 target date, while challenges to achieving others must be urgently addressed, according to a new report launched on 1 July by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Photo: Faika Berat Pehlivan, Photo Contest on MDGs

New Horizons - Based on comprehensive official statistics, the Millennium Development Goals Report 2013 shows that the combined actions of national governments, the international community, civil society and the private sector are making the achievement of the MDGs a reality.

After the sign of Millennium Declaration in 2000, millions of people’s lives were improved by already meeting targets on reducing poverty, increasing access to safe water and achieving gender parity in primary schools.

Millions of lives saved

According to the report, big gains have been made in health.

Between 2000 and 2010, mortality rates from malaria fell by more than 25 per cent globally, and an estimated 1.1 million deaths were averted.

Death rates from tuberculosis at the global level and in several regions could be halved by 2015, compared to 1990 levels.

Between 1995 and 2011, a cumulative total of 51 million tuberculosis patients were successfully treated, saving 20 million lives.

The target of halving the percentage of people suffering from hunger by 2015 is within reach, the report says.

The proportion of undernourished people worldwide decreased from 23 per cent in 1990-1992 to 15 per cent in 2010-2012.

Uneven progress

Global attention needs to focus on disparities, the report recommends. Progress towards the eight MDGs has been uneven not only among regions and countries, but also between population groups within countries.

People living in poverty or in rural areas remain at an unfair disadvantage.

In 2011, only 53 per cent of births in rural areas were attended by skilled health personnel, versus 84 per cent in urban areas.

Eighty-three per cent of the population without access to an improved drinking water source lives in rural communities.

MDGs and the post-2015 development agenda

The report says a successful conclusion to the MDGs will be an important building block for a successor development agenda, and that volumes of experience and lessons learned from the MDGs will benefit prospects for continued progress.

The Millennium Development Goals Report, an annual assessment of global and regional progress towards the Goals, reflects the most comprehensive, up-to-date data compiled by over 27 UN and international agencies and is produced by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs.


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  • Millennium Development Report 2013 English