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Iraq Facts & Figures

Key Facts and Figures

 

 

Poverty & Unemployment

Food Insecurity

Population Growth and Housing

Refugees, Returnees and the Internally Displaced

Youth and Women

Education

Literacy

Health

Water & Sanitation

Electricity

Environment

 

Poverty & Unemployment

Almost seven million Iraqis (23% of the total population) live in poverty (spending less than 77, 000 Iraqi Dinars per person per month, or 2.2 US$ per person per day.

Iraq has taken a backward step since 1990 to achieve full and productive employment for young people.

Rising from 7% in 1990, youth unemployment rate is 30% double the national average of 15%, far from the target of 4% in 2015.

The economy is unable to produce enough jobs to employ the 450,000 Iraqis entering the labour force each year.

Three quarters of workers without an intermediate education lack social security, compared to 55% of all employed.

 

 

Food Insecurity

Food insecurity varies between 2 and 16 %. The proportion of chronically malnourished children under the age of five is high at 22% , more than one in five children aged under five years (21%) suffer from stunted growth and 5% suffer from wasting.

 

 

Population Growth and Housing

Iraq’s population tripled between 1970 and 2007, growing from 10 to 30 million, 71% of whom currently live in urban areas. 13% of houses in urban Iraq have more than ten occupants and 37% have three or more people per room. 57% of the urban popu¬lation currently lives in slum-like conditions. By 2030, the population will grow to almost 50 million , which will put further strains on access to adequate housing.

 

 

Refugees, Returnees and the Internally Displaced

Internally displaced persons (IDPs) and returnees in Iraq continue to have a complex set of problems that will need long-term planning and additional government and community intervention to solve.

Most of the Iraqis displaced post-2006 have not returned home, and an estimated 1.5 million live in neighbouring countries.

IDP and returnee families cite access to services like employment, shelter, health, water and fuel as a priority need.

UNHCR registered nearly 35,000 refugees inside Iraq at the end of 2009, mostly Palestinians, Syrians and Iranians.

UNHCR indicated that the number of Refugees who have returned home between 2008 and July 2010 was 78,850.

 

 

Youth and Women

Iraq is considered one of the most youthful countries in the world, nearly half of its population is less than 19 years old.

Iraq’s youth is facing many challenges and many youth exhibit symptoms of acute stress. 24% of those aged 10-30 suffer from nervousness, 17% have permanent headaches and 32% cry easily.

Iraq is not keeping its youth in school. Attendance rates begin a steep decline after primary school.

Girls’ attendance in schools falls five to ten percent below that of boys, slightly more than 300,000 Iraqi youth aged 10-18 have never attended school.

70% of youth in Iraq state they have no interest in cultural and art activities, 87% do not attend youth clubs, 68% do not practice sports and 37% do not have any hobbies. 16

Women in Iraq are underrepresented in the higher levels of the public sector and government.

Just 18% of women are employed or looking for employment, and they take up only 7% of employment in non-agricultural sectors.

Violence, traditional societal views of women, insecurity and weak performance of state functions will affect the role of Iraqi women in rebuilding the country.

 

 

 

Education

Education at all levels is hindered by outdated curricula and teaching methods and poor infrastructure. Net primary enrolment dropped from 91% to 85% between 1990 and 2007, and is particularly low at 70% among girls in rural areas. Dropout rates between primary, intermediate and secondary levels are high: net intermediate enrolment is 39% while net secondary enrolment is just 21%.

 

 

Literacy

One in five Iraqis, aged 10 – 49, cannot read or write. There are significant disparities in literacy rates across gender, age and urban versus rural areas. Illiteracy among Iraqi women (24%) is more than double that of Iraqi men (11%). Rural populations are more adversely affected by Illiteracy (25%) than urban (14%) populations and within rural areas the literacy divide between men and women is wider .

 

 

Health

Iraq’s health sector faces considerable and complex challenges, despite recent improvements. Access to quality primary healthcare has improved, but primary healthcare centres remain out of reach for many Iraqis.

The maternal mortality ratio is the second highest in the region at 84 per 100,000 births, placing Iraq in a group of 68 countries globally which account for 97% of all maternal and child deaths. This is mainly the result of poor birth practices, inadequate referral or availability of emergency obstetric care, and a high level of anemia among pregnant women (35%), which particularly affects rural women and those in the southern and central governorates. One in four delivering women faces serious complications during pregnancy. Approximately one in 15 adult female deaths can be attributed to maternal mortality.

The proportion of children dying within the first year of life has dropped from 50 to 35 for every 1,000 live births, but these infants account for 85% of deaths among children aged under five.

 

 

Water & Sanitation

Availability of water for agriculture, industry and household supplies is a major issue for Iraq. The quality and quantity of the country’s water has been impacted by upstream damming, pollution, climate change and inefficient usage. The amount of water available per person per year decreased from 5,900 cubic metres to 2,400 cubic metres between 1977 and 2009.

Decreasing water supplies have been exacerbated by drought conditions between 2005 and 2009, which have devastated agriculture and caused drinking water shortages, particularly in rural areas. 39% of cropland suffered a reduction in coverage for two years in succession between 2007 and 2009, and livestock has been decimated. The Tigris and the Euphrates, Iraq’s two major surface water sources, may dry up by 2040 if current conditions prevail.

Sustainable access to safe water is poor; the proportion of households using an improved water source has remained at around 80% since 1990. In rural areas, this figure is just 57%. Problems with infrastructure mean that the supply of water often suffers from interruptions and poor quality. Iraq also faces considerable challenges in sanitation.

Just 26% of the population is covered by the public sewage network, dropping to 2% in rural areas. An alarming 83% of Iraq’s wastewater is left untreated, contributing to the pollution of Iraq’s waterways and general environment.

 

 

Electricity

According to the Ministry of Electricity, Iraq is generating 8,000 of the 13-15,000 mega-watts of power currently required to meet Iraqi needs today.

Electricity supplies are unreliable, with the public network on average only able to supply eight hours of power to Iraqi households per day , even during periods of low demand, public approval of the electricity supply has never risen above 39% since 2003. In addition to affecting the functioning of household appliances, low electricity supplies are also hampering the pumping of drinking water into homes and severely impacting the economic development. Many businesses have to invest a significant amount of their revenues in expensive private generators.

 

 

Environment

Iraq’s environment has suffered greatly from the impact of poor policies on pollution and resource management. As a result, the country is exposed to a range of environmental issues, including drought, desertification and increasing soil salinity. 39% of Iraq’s agricultural land suffered a reduction in cropland between 2007 and 2009. Air, water and soil pollution is a growing problem. Percentage of dried Mesopotamian marshlands is 90% and proportion of land area covered by forest is %4.0 .

The years of conflict and violence left chemical pollution and unexploded ordnances affecting the livelihoods and safety of an estimated 1.6 million Iraqis.

 

 
  1. 1990 data from Employment and Unemployment Survey 1990; COSIT Labour Force Survey 2008

  2. Inter-Agency IAU, Iraq Labour Force Analysis 2003-2008 (2009)
  3. World Bank/COSIT/KRSO IHSES 2007
  4. GoI, FAO, UNICEF, WFP, Food Deprivation in Iraq (draft report 2009)
  5. WFP/COSIT/KRSO Comprehensive Food Security and Vulnerability Analysis 2007
  6. UNICEF/COSIT/KRSO/MoH Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2006
  7. Central Office of Statistics and Information Technology (COSIT), Annual Abstract of Statistics 2006-2007 (2007)
  8. GoI Ministry of Municipalities and Public Works, UN HABITAT (2007), “The State of Iraq Cities Report 2006/2007: Cities in Transi¬tion”.
  9. World Bank/COSIT/KRSO IHSES 2007
  10. UN Population Division 2008
  11. IOM Iraq: Review of Displacement and Return in Iraq, August 2010IIOM Iraq:
  12. UNHCR, Monthly statistical update on return (June 2010)
  13. UNHCR, Monthly Statistical Update on Return, July 2010
  14. U.S. Census, International Database, 2010
  15. UNFPA/COSIT/KRSO/MoYS Iraq National Youth and Adolescent Survey 2009
  16. COSIT Labour Force Survey 2008
  17. MDG Indicator Database: http://mdgs.un.org/unsd/mdg/Data.aspx
  18. UNFPA/COSIT/KRSO/MoYS Iraq National Youth and Adolescent Survey 2009
  19. UNFPA/COSIT/KRSO/MoYS Iraq National Youth and Adolescent Survey 2009
  20. COSIT Labour Force Survey 2008
  21. World Bank/COSIT/KRSO IHSES 2007
  22. World Food Programme VAM 2007
  23. United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), MICS, 2006
  24. WHO/COSIT/KRSO/MoH Iraq Family Health Survey 2006-2007
  25. WHO/COSIT/KRSO/MoH Iraq Family Health Survey 2006-2007
  26. World Bank/COSIT/KRSO Iraq Household Socio-Economic Survey 2007
  27. WHO/MoH/COSIT/KRSO Iraq Family Health Survey 2006-2007
  28. 1990 data from Maternal and Child Mortality Study 1990; 2006 data from UNICEF/COSIT/KRSO/MoH Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2006
  29. UNESCO, “UNESCO calls for concerted efforts to protect water resources in Iraq on the occasion of World Water Day 2010” (March 2010)
  30. FAO/Inter-agency Information and Analysis Unit, Drought Mapping Analysis (2009); OCHA, Drought Report (2009)
  31. UNICEF/COSIT/KRSO/MoH Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2006
  32. World Bank/COSIT/KRSO Iraq Household Socioeconomic Survey 2007
  33. Ministry of Municipalities and Public Works
  34. Ministry of Electricity (Figure does not include Kurdistan Regional Government)
  35. World Bank/COSIT/KRSO IHSES 2007
  36. ABC/BBC Poll 2009
  37. BBC, “Baghdad diary: Searching for power”, 29 June 2010
  38. FAO/IAU Drought Mapping Analysis (2009)
  39. ENEP Report on Marshlands (2009)
  40. Central Office of Statistics and Information Technology (COSIT), MDGR (2007)
  41. IMMAP/UNDP Landmine Impact Survey 2004-2006
 

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