New York – Children born today in highly developed countries are expected to live 19 years longer and spend seven more years in school than their counterparts in the least developed nations, UN report released on Friday said.
Norway, Switzerland, Australia, Ireland and Germany were the top five highest-ranking in the annual human development index, which compares health, education and income levels.
The figures show people are generally living longer, getting more education and earning more money, but there are still massive discrepancies.
“While these statistics present a stark picture in themselves, they also speak to the tragedy of millions of individuals, whose lives are affected by inequity and lost opportunities, neither of which are inevitable,” said Achim Steiner, the Head of UN Development Programme.
The report cites gender inequality and disparities in access to quality education and healthcare as key factors.
Based on the data, a child born today in Norway is projected to live at least 82 years and spend almost 18 years in education.
And in Niger, the lowest-ranked country, they would be expected to live to 60 and spend five years in school, according to the report from the UNDP.
The group of 58 highest developed countries has a life expectancy of almost 80, while the 38 lowest are expected to live to just over 60.
In terms of schooling, those in the most developed countries on average are expected to spend 16 years in education, compared to nine years in the least developed.