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El Salvador

Total area: 21,041Km2
Population: 6,071,774
HDI rank: 79; HDI value: 0.701
Population living below the poverty line: 40.6%
GDP per capita: 7,300 USD
Life expectancy: 74 years
Illiteracy rate (women): 22%
Illiteracy rate (men): 17%
Infant mortality rate: 20.3/1,000
Fertility rate: 2.08 children/woman
Access to drinking water: 84%

El Salvador

Considerable effort has been made by El Salvador to achieve its MDGs but there are still many challenges ahead. Poverty (and extreme poverty in particular) has been decreasing but the goal of cutting it by half is still a long way off.

The education sector has been prioritised, which explains the positive results obtained following the Education Reform Project and the EDUCO programme, the main goals of which are: to improve the quality of education (enrolment rates rose from 8,400 in 1991 to 237,000 in 1999; failure rates dropped from 7.6% to 5.2% between 1993 and 2000; there were fewer early school-leavers in both urban and rural areas, resulting in an increase in the number of pupils completing Year 6) and to promote greater interaction between parents and teachers.

Gender equality continues to be lacking, with little progress having been made in this area. The still-present failings in the health sector are partly responsible for the scant changes in relation to the intended reduction of the infant and maternal mortality rates to two thirds and three quarters respectively.

An analysis of MDG6 goals leads us to conclude that, while there has been a reduction in the incidence rate of serious diseases like tuberculosis, the fight against HIV/AIDS and malaria continues to be an uphill struggle. Increasingly, action is being taken to inform, alert and encourage Salvadorans to be more aware of environmental matters and their importance.

If the economy is to be strengthened and made more efficient, it is fundamental that the Salvadoran government enters into partnerships aimed at increasing public sector capacity and developing other sectors of activity, so that it can become less heavily dependent on agriculture. In turn, human resources who are suitably qualified and sufficient in number are needed for the tertiary sector so that it can play a key role in the country’s development.

Source: Human Development Report - UNDP; The World Factbook; Human Development Report - UNDP


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