Sri Lanka, Bangladesh Best; India, Pakistan Worst in World Bank’s Human Capital Rankings

A child born in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh would be more productive than one born in India or Pakistan, according to new rankings by the World Bank.  Sri Lanka has outpaced both the South Asian average and the lower middle-income average in all criteria, except for stunting, in the first Human Capital Index (HCI) prepared by the World Bank. 

Bangladesh ranked 106th among 157 countries that were used by the WB for the list. Sri Lanka topped the list among South Asian countries, with a ranking of 72. Nepal was placed at 102, India at 115, Afghanistan 133, and Pakistan 134.

It said a child born in Bangladesh today would reach only 48% of their full potential unless they enjoyed complete education and full health. In India, a child will be 44% productive and in Pakistan 39%.  Sri Lanka tops South Asian countries with children reaching 58% productivity, followed by Nepal with 49%.

The index, launched yesterday at the World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings in Bali of Indonesia, shows that 56% of children born today across the world will lose more than half their potential lifetime earnings because governments are not making effective investments in their people to ensure a healthy, educated, and resilient population ready for the workplace of the future.

The rankings, based on health, education and survivability measures, assess the future productivity and earnings potential for citizens of the WB members, and ultimately those countries’ potential economic growth.

Singapore topped the list, followed by South Korea, Japan and Hong Kong, while African countries fared the worst in the rankings, with Chad and South Sudan taking the two lowest spots.

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