Daily living conditions in Iraq dismal, UN survey finds

Report on Iraqi living conditions released in Baghdad today
Comprehensive household survey conducted by Iraqi Planning Ministry with UNDP
Baghdad, 12 May 2005— A comprehensive survey on living conditions in Iraq released here
today by the Iraqi Ministry of Planning and Development Cooperation in collaboration with the
United Nations Development Programme reveals grave deterioration in living standards in the
country over the past 25 years, with Iraq now suffering from some of the region’s highest rates of
joblessness and child malnutrition and continuing severe deficiencies in sewage systems, electric
power supplies and other essential public services.
The survey, conducted from a representative sampling of 22,000 households in 2004, provides
one of the largest and most comprehensive statistical portraits of the country in recent years. The
survey — posted on the Internet today at http://www.iq.undp.org/ilcs.htm found that:
• Unemployment among young men with secondary or higher education stands at 37 percent
• Even though most Iraqis are now connected to water, electricity or sewage networks, supplies
remain unstable and unreliable
• Almost a quarter of children between the ages of six months and five years suffer from
• More young people today are illiterate than in previous generations
• Just 83 percent of boys and 79 percent of girls of school age are enrolled in primary school.
“This survey shows a rather tragic situation of the quality of life in Iraq," Iraqi Minister of Planning
Barham Salih said at the news conference where the report was released in Baghdad today.
Also speaking at the launch of the survey, Staffan de Mistura, the Secretary-General’s Deputy
Special Representative in Iraq, said the study would serve as an important tool for policy makers,
development planners and experts. “It not only provides a better understanding of socio-economic
conditions in Iraq,” he said, “but it will certainly benefit the development and reconstruction
processes in Iraq. The survey will help us address the grave disparities, between urban and rural
and between governorates, in a more targeted fashion.”
The fieldwork for the survey was carried out by a team from the Central Organisation for Statistics
and Information Technology in Baghdad (COSIT). The team was trained by researchers from the
Norwegian NGO Fafo-AIS, which also carried out the solid analysis of the data compiled. The
survey was funded by the Government of Norway and UNDP.
The three volumes of the report, including the Tabulation Report, Analytical Report and SocioEconomic Atlas, are available in Arabic and English at http://www.iq.undp.org/ilcs.htm.
Please find also in the UNDG ITF News section the latest article: “May 12 2005, Iraqi Planning
Ministry Launches first comprehensive survey on living conditions in Iraq”
For further information, please contact:
In Amman: Alia al-Dalli, e-mail: [email protected], tel. (962 6) 560 8361, mobile (962) 79 502
3226 , or Frances Kinnon, e-mail: [email protected], mobile 962-79-502-2481;
In New York: Nadine Shamounki, e-mail: [email protected] , tel. +1 (212) 906-5171 or
Dan Shepard, e-mail:[email protected], tel. +1(212) 906-5325