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From The World Bank Group
Embargoed: not for news wire transmission, posting on websites, or any other media use until April 20, 2002 at 11 a.m. EDT (Washington time)

World Development Indicators 2002

The World Development Indicators (WDI) is the World Bank's premier annual compilation of data about development. WDI 2002 includes 800 indicators in 85 tables, organized in six sections: world view, people, environment, economy, states and markets, and global links.

Download the report by chapter: (PDF files)

Introductory Information  Preface, Table of Contents, Users Guide ... (320K)

World View  Progress toward the international development goals (1.3 MB)

People  Gender, health, and employment (890K)

Environment  Natural resources and environmental changes (800K)

Economy  New opportunities for growth (815K)

States and Markets  Digital divide (490K)

Global Links  Evidence on globalization (860K)

Methodology & Bibliography  Statistical Methods, Data Documentation, Bibliography ... (200K)
The WDI 2002 includes a special Millennium Goals Supplement (160K PDF) on progress towards the Millennium Development Goals

Related Information
Press release in
French (47K PDF) , and Spanish (47K PDF).

Media Advisory for Washington, DC

Regional Summary Tables from the WDI 2001 (160K PDF)
Embargoed: not for news wire transmission, posting on websites, or any other media use until April 20, 2002 at 11 a.m. EDT (Washington time)

Highlights from the WDI 2002:

  • Malnutrition: 150 million children in low and middle income economies are malnourished, and at current rates of improvement 140 million children will be underweight in 2020.
  • Education: In most low-income countries girls are less likely to attend school than boys. And even when girls start school at the same time, they are more likely to drop out.
  • Adult illiteracy: Females in developing countries showed the greatest decline in adult illiteracy, going from 39 per cent in 1990 to 31 per cent in 2000.
  • Child mortality: Deaths of infants and children dropped rapidly over the past 25 years. The number of deaths of children under five fell from 15 million in 1980, to about 11 million in 1990.
  • Life expectancy: All regions except Europe and Central Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa showed increases in life expectancy between 1990 and 2000. Life expectancy fell a staggering 14 years in South Africa, 5 years in Uganda, 4 years in Russian Federation, and 2 years in Nigeria.
  • Population: In many developing countries, over 40 percent of the population was under age 15 in 2000, creating a heavy burden of dependency for the working age population. In Sub-Saharan Africa, one hundred workers supported 80 children under age 15, compared to only 30 in high income countries. Between 2000 and 2025, another 1.7 billion people will be added to the world, with roughly 97 percent being born in developing countries.
  • HIV/AIDS: Every hour of every day, almost 600 people are infected with HIV/AIDS, and more than 60 children die of the virus across the world.
  • Urban and rural population: Almost 94 percent of the increase in the world's urban population over the next 20 years will occur in developing countries--including an additional 541 million urban dwellers in China and Southeast Asia.
  • Agriculture: The cereal yields in low-income countries is 1/3 of yields in high income countries. Yet for many poorer developing countries agriculture is the main source of economic growth, and agriculture growth is the cornerstone of poverty reduction. A 10 percent increase in crop yields can reduce the proportion of people living on less than $1 a day by between 6 to 12 percent. For African countries, 10 percent increase in yields could reduce the percentage of those living on less than $1 a day by 9.4 percent.
  • Deforestation: Of the world's 1.2 billion extreme poor living on less than $1 a day, 90 percent depend on forests and their product. But the forests are shrinking, as is the diversity of the plants and animals they support. At the beginning of the 20th century, the earth's forested area was about 5 billion hectares. Since then, it has shrunk to 3.9 billion hectares.
  • Water: Each year 80 million additional people will tap the earth's water, putting a higher demand on water. Freshwater resources per capita vary significantly by region from 1,427 cubic meters in the Middle East and North Africa, which suffers from severe water shortage, to 2,800 cu.m in South Asia to 33,000 cu. m. in Latin America and the Caribbean. Globally, agriculture is the main user of fresh water, accounting for 70% of total withdrawal (90% in low-income countries).
  • Energy: High-income economies, with 15 percent of the world's population, use half the world's commercial energy. However, the use of energy by low-income economies grew twice as fast as high income economies (4.5 percent compared with 1.7 percent) between 1980 and 1999.
  • Size of the economy: From 1990 to 2000, the fastest growing region was East Asia and Pacific at 7.2 percent annual GDP growth, followed by South Asia at 5.6 percent. Latin America grew by 3.3 percent, Middle East and North Africa by 3.0 percent, and Sub-Saharan Africa by 2.5 percent. Europe and Central Asia fell by 1.5 percent.
  • Global financial flows: Foreign direct investment in developing countries, which increased from $24 billion in 1990 to $184 billion in 1999, dropped to $167 billion in 2000. Capital flows to South Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Middle East and North Africa remained small–about 6 percent of the total to developing countries. Most private capital continues to go to Latin America, East Asia, and Eastern Europe and the states of the former Soviet Union.
  • Trade: The developing counties have increased their share of world exports (goods and services) from 19 percent to 26 percent between 1990 and 2000.
  • Aid: Europe and Central Asia ($20) and Sub-Saharan Africa ($19) received the highest aid per capita in 2000. East Asia and Pacific ($4) and South Asia received the lowest ($3).
--World Development Indicators
---(the complete series)

--World Development Reports
---(the complete series)

-- Selected World Development
--- Indicators (the complete series)

--World Investment Reports
---(the complete series)

--World Investment Reports
---(selected statistics)

-- Planning for Development

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