The UAE has ranked first regionally and 32nd globally in the Human Development Report 2010. The United Nations Development Programme announced the new rankings during a ceremony held on Monday in Abu Dhabi to launch the 20th anniversary of the report.
The UAE was also rated as one of only two countries from the region in the most advanced category or the category of “very high human development”.
For the first time, the 2010 Report measures human development in terms of the distribution of achievements and opportunities within societies, with an inequality-adjusted Human Development Index (HDI) assessing relative progress among national groups in health, education and income. The Arab countries together suffer a large HDI decline of 27 per cent because of substantial inequality in all the said three areas.
In addition to the new HDI, which includes some technical refinements of its traditional indicators for income, health and education, the 2010 Human Development Report introduces three new indices to measure the extent and impact of inequality, gender gaps, and extreme poverty.
The UAE ranked first regionally and 45th globally among 138 countries covered by the Gender Inequality Index, which measure gender gaps in reproductive health, empowerment and participation in the labor force. This performance is attributable to gender equality in education, with 77 per cent of adult women in the UAE attaining secondary or higher level of education, the same as for men.