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An online Atlas of the MDGs is available here
From the World Bank Group
World Development Indicators 2009
Preface----- Acknowledgments----- Partners----- Users guide----- Table of contents
Index of Indicators----- Primary data documentation----- Statistical methods----- Credits----- Bibliography
Millennium Development Goals----- Regional Backgrounders

The world seems to be entering an economic crisis unlike any seen since the founding of the Bretton Woods institutions. Indeed, simultaneous crises. The bursting of a real estate bubble. The liquidity and solvency problems for major banks. The liquidity trap as consumers and businesses prefer holding cash to spending on consumption or investment. The disruptions in international capital flows. And for some countries a currency crisis.
Plummeting global output and trade in the last quarter of 2008 brought the global economy to a standstill after years of remarkable growth, throwing millions out of work. The United States, as the epicenter, has seen unemployment rising to more than 11 million, an unemployment rate of 7.2 percent. Most forecasts show world GDP growth slowing to near zero or negative values, after a 3.4 percent increase in 2008.
What brought about the crisis? Why is it so severe? How quickly has it spread? In this introduction, and in the introductions to sections four (Economy) and six (Global links), the data describe the events that have brought us to this point. Could the crisis have been anticipated by looking more closely at the same data? Perhaps. Perhaps not. But there is still much we can learn about how these events unfolded.

1.1 Size of the economy
1.2 Millennium Development Goals: eradicating poverty and saving lives
1.3 Millennium Development Goals: protecting our common environment
1.4 Millennium Development Goals: overcoming obstacles
1.5 Women in development
1.6 Key indicators for other economies

Text figures, tables, and boxes
1a Developing economies had their best decade of growth in 2000–07
1b Long-term trends reached new heights
1c Most developing economy exports go to high-income economies
1d Increased investment led to faster growth in low- and middle-income economies
1e Large current account surpluses and deficits were concentrated in a few economies during 2005–07
1f Current account surpluses and deficits increased 
1g Trade surpluses led to large build-ups in reserves
1h Trade deficits were financed by foreign investors 
1i Private capital flows to developing economies took off in 2002
1j . . . And investors perceived less risk
1k Prices of assets, especially in real estate, were rising rapidly in some countries 
1l . . . And so were equity asset valuations
1m Indebtedness ratios have improved for most economies
1n Growing reserves comfortably covered short-term debt liabilities
1o Commodity price rises accelerated in recent years
1p Food and fuel importers were hurt by rising prices
1q Output in the largest economies slowed or declined in the 4th quarter of 2008
1r U.S. household debt rose rapidly after 2000 6
1s U.S. house prices peaked in 2006
1t As housing bubbles burst, investors lost confidence
1u Savings and investment in China
1v . . . And the United States
1w The five largest current account surpluses and deficits
1x U.S. foreign assets and liabilities doubled 7
1y Assets underlying over the counter derivatives rose sevenfold
1z . . . While the market value of derivatives rose ninefold
1aa U.S. domestic financial sector profits averaged almost 30 percent of before-tax profits during 2000–06
1bb Derivatives can undermine capital controls, leading to linkages that make market dynamics difficult to predict
1cc The number of banking crises rose after the 1970s
1dd The latest crisis is affecting a large portion of global income
1ee The cost of systemic financial crises can be very high
1ff Borrowing costs have climbed, reflecting perceived risk
1gg Equity markets have suffered large losses
1hh Low-income economies depend the most on official aid, workers’ remittances, and foreign direct investment
1ii Remittances are significant for many low-income economies
1jj Fiscal positions have generally improved but remain weak for some developing economies
1kk Finding fiscal space in low-income economies
1ll Recent World Bank Group initiatives
1.2a Location of indicators for Millennium Development Goals 1–4
1.3a Location of indicators for Millennium Development Goals 5–7
1.4a Location of indicators for Millennium Development Goal 8


Sustainable development is about improving the quality of people’s lives and expanding their ability to shape their futures. These generally call for higher per capita incomes, but they also involve equitable education and job opportunities, better health and nutrition, and a more sustainable natural environment.
The Millennium Development Goals are the world’s time-bound targets to measure and monitor the progress of countries in improving people’s welfare. They address extreme poverty in its many dimensions—income, hunger, and disease—while promoting education, gender equality, health, and sanitation. At the midpoint between their adoption in 2000 and the target date of 2015, the goals related to human development (primary school completion rate, under-five and maternal mortality) have recorded slower progress than those related to economic growth and infrastructure development (income poverty, gender parity, access to clean water and sanitation; figure 2a).

2.1 Population dynamics
2.2 Labor force structure
2.3 Employment by economic activity
2.4 Decent work and productive employment
2.5 Unemployment
2.6 Children at work
2.7 Poverty rates at national poverty lines
2.8 Poverty rates at international poverty lines
2.9 Distribution of income or consumption
2.10 Assessing vulnerability and security
2.11 Education inputs
2.12 Participation in education
2.13 Education efficiency
2.14 Education completion and outcomes
2.15 Education gaps by income and gender
2.16 Health systems
2.17 Disease prevention coverage and quality
2.18 Reproductive health
2.19 Nutrition
2.20 Health risk factors and future challenges
2.21 Health gaps by income and gender
2.22 Mortality

Text figures, tables, and boxes
2a Different goals—different progress
2b What is decent work?
2c Employment to population ratios have not changed much over time 
2d . . . But variations are wide across regions
2e High employment to population ratios in some countries reflect high numbers of working poor
2f Fewer women than men are employed all over the world
2g Many young people are in the workforce, at the expense of higher education
2h For many poor countries, there is a tradeoff between education and employment
2i Although there are large regional variations in vulnerable employment 
2j . . . Women are more likely than men to be in vulnerable employment
2k Share of working poor in total employment is highest in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa
2l Labor productivity has increased across the world
2m Scenarios for 2008
2.6a Children work long hours
2.8a While the number of people living on less than $1.25 a day has fallen, the number living on $1.25–$2.00 a day has increased
2.8b Poverty rates have begun to fall
2.8c Regional poverty estimates
2.9a The Gini coefficient and ratio of income or consumption of the richest quintile to the poorest quintiles are closely correlated
2.15a There is a large gap in educational attainment across gender and urban-rural lines
2.16a There is a wide gap in health expenditure per capita between high-income economies and developing economies


The world economy needs ever-increasing amounts of energy to sustain economic growth, raise living standards, and reduce poverty. But today’s trends in energy use are not sustainable. As the world’s population grows and economies become more industrialized, nonrenewable energy sources will become scarcer and more costly. And carbon dioxide emissions from the use of fossil fuels will continue to build in the atmosphere, accelerating global warming. Energy-related carbon dioxide now accounts for 61–65 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions (IEA 2008a; IPCC 2007a; WRI 2005). Global warming will have particularly pernicious effects for developing economies, with their high exposure and low adaptive capacity. Where energy comes from, how we produce it, and how much we use will profoundly affect development in the 21st century.
This introduction focuses on recent trends in energy use and carbon dioxide emissions—and projections through 2030. There is now a consensus that action is needed to curb the growth in human-made greenhouse-gas emissions (IPCC 2007b; IEA 2008a). A new post-2012 policy regime on global climate change—to be agreed in Copenhagen in late 2009—aims to set a quantified global goal for stabilizing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and to establish robust policy mechanisms that ensure the goal is achieved.

3.1 Rural population and land use
3.2 Agricultural inputs
3.3 Agricultural output and productivity
3.4 Deforestation and biodiversity
3.5 Freshwater
3.6 Water pollution
3.7 Energy production and use
3.8 Energy dependency and efficiency and carbon dioxide emissions
3.9 Trends in greenhouse gas emissions
3.10 Sources of electricity
3.11 Urbanization
3.12 Urban housing conditions
3.13 Traffic and congestion
3.14 Air pollution
3.15 Government commitment
3.16 Toward a broader measure of savings

Text figures, tables, and boxes
3a Energy use has doubled since 1971
3b High-income economies use almost half of all global energy
3c The top six energy consumers use 55 percent of global energy
3d High-income economies use more than 11 times the energy that low-income economies do
3e Nonrenewable fuels are projected to account for 80 percent of energy use in 2030—about the same as in 2006
3f Fossil fuels will remain the main sources of energy through 2030
3g Known global oil reserves and countries with highest endowments in 2006
3h Production declines from existing oil fields have been rapid
3i Economic activity, energy use, and greenhouse gas emissions move together
3j Decarbonization of energy reversed at the beginning of the 21st century
3k The top six carbon dioxide emitters in 2005
3l High-income economies are by far the greatest emitters of carbon dioxide
3m Carbon dioxide emissions embedded in international trade
3n Impact of Policy Scenarios: carbon dioxide concentration, temperature increase, emissions, and energy demand
3o Reductions in energy-related carbon dioxide emissions by region in the 550 and 450 parts per million Policy Scenarios relative to the Trend Scenario
3p Energy efficiency has been improving
3q Electricity generated from renewables is projected to more than double by 2030
3r Top 10 users of wind to generate electricity
3s Cost and savings under the Policy Scenarios
3.1a What is rural? Urban?
3.2a Nearly 40 percent of land globally is devoted to agriculture
3.2b Developing regions lag in agricultural machinery, which reduces their agricultural productivity
3.3a Cereal yield in low-income economies was less than 40 percent of the yield in high-income countries
3.3b Sub-Saharan Africa had the lowest yield, while East Asia and Pacific is closing the gap with high-income economies
3.5a Agriculture is still the largest user of water, accounting for some 70 percent of global withdrawals
3.5b The share of withdrawals for agriculture approaches 90 percent in some developing regions
3.6a Emissions of organic water pollutants declined in most economies from 1990 to 2005, even in some of the top emitters
3.7a A person in a high-income economy uses an average of more than 11 times as much energy as a person in a low-income economy
3.8a High-income economies depend on imported energy 
3.8b . . . mostly from middle-income economies in the Middle East and North Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean
3.9a The 10 largest contributors to methane emissions account for about 62 percent of emissions
3.9b The 10 largest contributors to nitrous oxide emissions account for about 56 percent of emissions
3.10a Sources of electricity generation have shifted since 1999 
3.10b . . . with developing economies relying more on coal
3.11a Developing economies had the largest increase in urban population between 1990 and 2007
3.11b Latin America and the Caribbean had the same share of urban population as high-income economies in 2007
3.12a Selected housing indicators for smaller economies
3.13a Particulate matter concentration has fallen in all income groups, and the higher the income, the lower the concentration


Global output grew 3.8 percent in 2007, receding slightly from 4 percent in 2006. The downturn was greatest in high-income economies, where growth fell from 3 percent to 2.5 percent, affected by the cooling of the housing market, a precursor to the 2008 financial crisis. Low- and middle-income economies, which have grown faster on average, reached a peak of 8.1 percent annual growth in 2007. Their strong performance was led by the economies of East Asia and Pacific and South Asia (figure 4a), dominated by China at 13 percent annual growth and India at 9 percent. After a decade of sustained growth India’s gross national income (GNI) per capita (using the World Bank Atlas method) now places it with China among the lower middle-income economies. Cambodia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Mongolia, the Philippines, and Vietnam in East Asia and Pacific all grew faster than 6 percent, as did all South Asian economies except Afghanistan and Nepal (figure 4b).

4.1 Growth of output--------
1990-2000 and 2000-2007
4.2 Structure of output--------
4.3 Structure of manufacturing--------
4.4 Structure of merchandise exports-------
4.5 Structure of merchandise imports--------
4.6 Structure of service exports--------
4.7 Structure of service imports--------
4.8 Structure of demand--------
4.9 Growth of consumption and investment--------
1990-2000 and 2000-2007
4.10 Central government finances--------
4.11 Central government expenses--------
4.12 Central government revenues--------
4.13 Monetary indicators
4.14 Exchange rates and prices
4.15 Balance of payments current account--------

Text figures, tables, and boxes
4a Economic growth slowed in 2007
4b Large middle-income economies with economic growth above 10 percent
4c Asian countries invested more
4d East Asia and Pacific is the largest saver
4e High-income economies still produce the largest share of manufactured goods . . . 
4f . . . And account for the largest share of manufactures exports
4g Twelve developing economies had a cash deficit greater than 3 percent of GDP
4h Five developing economies had a public debt to GDP ratio greater than 60 percent over 2005–07
4i Modest inflationary pressure affected 74 countries
4j Real interest rates declined in 66 countries
4k–4p Growth in GDP and investment 2007–08, selected major developing economies
4q–4v Growth in industrial production 2007–08, selected major developing economies
4w–4bb Lending and inflation rates 2007–08, selected major developing economies
4cc–4hh Central government debt 2007–08, selected major developing economies
4.3a Manufacturing continues to show strong growth in East Asia through 2007
4.4a Developing economies’ share of world merchandise exports continues to expand
4.5a Top 10 developing economy exporters of merchandise goods in 2007
4.6a Top 10 developing economy exporters of commercial services in 2007
4.7a The mix of commercial service imports by developing economies is changing
4.9a GDP per capita is still lagging in some regions
4.10a Fifteen developing economies had a government expenditure to GDP ratio of 30 percent or higher
4.11a Interest payments are a large part of government expenses for some developing economies
4.12a Rich economies rely more on direct taxes
4.15a Top 15 economies with the largest reserves in 2007


Governments are becoming increasingly important users of ICT, particularly for e-government—using Internet technology as a platform for exchanging information, providing services, and transacting with citizens, businesses, and other arms of government. That makes them major actors in fostering ICT uptake and setting information technology standards. E-government initiatives can make public administration more efficient, improve delivery of public services, and increase government accountability and transparency. They can also reduce transaction costs and processing times and increase government revenues. Some e-government projects have also improved governance, so vital for development.

5.1 Private sector in the economy
5.2 Business environment: enterprise surveys
5.3 Business environment: Doing Business indicators
5.4 Stock markets
5.5 Financial access, stability, and efficiency
5.6 Tax policies
5.7 Military expenditures and arms transfers
5.8 Public policies and institutions
5.9 Transport services
5.10 Power and communications
5.11 The information age

Text figures, tables, and boxes
5a Improving governance and contributing to growth
5b Seventy percent of mobile phone subscribers are in developing economies, 2000–07
5d Internet use in developing economies is growing, but still lags behind use in developed economies
5c Competition can spur growth in mobile phone service
5e Broadband access in developed and developing economies
5f International bandwidth has increased rapidly in Europe and Central Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean
5g Prices for mobile phone services have declined in many countries
5h Internet service prices have fallen in some Sub-Saharan African countries, 2005–07
5i East Asia & Pacific leads in share of information and communication technology goods exports
5j India leads developing economies in information and communications technology service export shares, 2007
5k Developing economies have only about 4 percent of the world’s secure servers, 2008
5l Partnership on Measuring ICT for Development


Although high-income economies remain the principal source and destination of international trade and investment, globalization has allowed more developing countries to participate in the growth of the global economy. They now account for almost 30 percent of world trade, and their share has been increasing. Developing economies attracted 20 times more foreign direct investment in nominal terms in 2007 than in 1990 and raised 40 times more net portfolio equity. The 12 largest developing economies, which produce 70 percent of developing country output, accounted for 67 percent of developing country exports in 2007. They also received 69 percent of the net private financial inflows to developing economies.
The financial crisis that originated in high-income economies has spread rapidly to developing economies through the same channels that connect them to the global economy: trade, investment, aid, and the movement of people. Although developing economies have previously encountered financial and economic crises, the current one is larger and may last longer. And because the world is more integrated, the crisis will affect more economies and more people.

6.1 Integration with the global economy
6.2 Growth of merchandise trade
6.3 Direction and growth of merchandise trade
6.4 High-income economy trade with low- and middle-income economies
6.5 Direction of trade of developing economies
6.6 Primary commodity prices      
1970 to 2008
6.7 Regional trade blocs
6.8 Tariff barriers
6.9 External debt
6.10 Ratios for external debt
6.11 Global private financial flows
6.12 Net official financial flows
6.13 Financial flows from Development Assistance Committee members
6.14 Allocation of bilateral aid from Development Assistance Committee members
6.15 Aid dependency
6.16 Distribution of net aid by Development Assistance Committee members
6.17 Movement of people   
1990-1995 and 2000-2005 / Remittances 1995 and 2007
6.18 Characteristics of immigrants in selected OECD countries
6.19 Travel and tourism

Text figures, tables, and boxes
6a The importance of trade to developing economies has increased
6b High-income economies and a few large middle-income economies account for a majority of world exports
6c Most developing economy exports were directed to high-income economies in 2007
6d Merchandise imports of Group of Seven industrial economies have declined, reflecting slowing demand for imports
6e Primary commodity prices have been volatile over the past year
6f For some economies food imports were equivalent to more than 7 percent of household consumption, 2005–07 average
6g Large middle-income economies received increasing amount of portfolio equity flows in recent years
6h Other developing economies borrowed increasing amounts from private creditors
6i Much global FDI is directed to high-income economies and a few large middle-income economies . . . 
6j . . . But as a share of GDP, FDI net inflows are a large source of private financing for low-income economies
6k FDI net inflows to Indonesia and Malaysia declined immediately after the East Asian financial crisis hit
6l FDI net inflows to the Republic of Korea and Thailand remained resilient for several years after the plunge in GDP
6m Net portfolio equity flows to large middle-income economies increased considerably
6n Stock market capitalizations declined after the financial crisis
6o Spreads on emerging market sovereign and corporate bonds have widened, increasing the cost of borrowing
6p Private lending to Europe and Central Asia increased ninefold between 2003 and 2007
6q For middle-income economies nearly 80 percent of long-term debt was from private creditors while for low-income economies 90 percent was from official creditors
6r Net nonconcessional lending to middle-income economies from international financial institutions, declining since 2002, recently increased
6s Aid is equivalent to 5 percent of the GNI of low-income economies
6t Aid for long-term development has remained about the same as in the 1970s
6u Aid flows declined after the Nordic banking crisis in 1991
6v Two U.S. financial crises in the late 20th century—aid down, then up
6w Migration to high-income economies has increased
6x More remittance flows are now going to developing economies
6y–6dd Merchandise trade 2006–08, selected major developing economies
6ee–6jj Equity price indices 2007–09, selected major developing economies
6kk–6pp Bond spreads 2007–09, selected major developing economies
6qq–6vv Financing through international capital markets 2007–09, selected major developing economies 326
6.1a Estimating the global emigrant stock
6.3a In 2007 around 70 percent of exports from low- and middleincome economies and from high-income economies were directed to high-income economies
6.4a High-income economies’ tariffs on imports from low- and middle-income economies fell between 1997 and 2007 but remain high for some products
6.5a Trading partners vary by region
6.6a Commodity prices increased between 2000 and the last quarter of 2008—the longest boom since 1960
6.7a The number of trade agreements has increased rapidly since 1990, especially bilateral agreements
6.9a The levels and the composition of external debt vary by regions
6.10a The burden of external debt service declined for most regions over 1995–2007
6.11a In 2007 middle-income economies received nearly 20 times more private capital flows than low-income economies did
6.12a Net nonconcessional lending from international financial institutions has declined in recent years as countries have paid off previous loans
6.15a Official development assistance from non-DAC donors, 2003–07
6.16a Most donors increased their proportions of untied aid between 2000 and 2007
6.19a High-income economies remain the main destination for international travelers, but the share of tourists visiting developing economies is rising

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