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UN Secretary-General: Undernutrition costs more than a billion and a half dollars each year in Madagascar

  |   SUN Country Network, SUN UN Network
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses the joint congress of both the Senate and the National Assembly of Madagascar. UN Photo/Mark Garten

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses the joint congress of both the Senate and the National Assembly of Madagascar. UN Photo/Mark Garten

“It paints an alarming picture. Nearly one out of two children here suffer from stunting. This is a tragedy for individuals and a disaster for development. Undernutrition costs more than a billion and a half dollars each year in Madagascar. That is almost 15 per cent of GDP. The human toll is immeasurable,” – Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary-General

On 11 May 2016, during a visit to Madagascar, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon launched the Cost of Hunger report. The results of the study show the extent of the negative effects of under-nutrition in the areas of health, education and productivity. An overwhelming 40% of child mortality is related to undernutrition and the country faces an economic loss of 14.5% of gross domestic product per year due to undernutrition.

During the event, the Secretary-General thanked the active network of female Parliamentarians who champion the cause of nutrition and recalled that Madagascar is a member of the Scaling Up Nutrition Movement.

“I commend your commitment to improving nutrition. Nutrition is about more than feeding people. It requires attention to health, agriculture, education, women’s empowerment and water,” – Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary-General

The first report of the Cost of Hunger in Africa (COHA) Study was launched on 28 March 2014 in Abuja, Nigeria, where experts gathered to review results of the report covering Egypt, Ethiopia, Swaziland and Uganda. The studies are led by the African Union Commission, and supported by the African Union Commission, Economic Commission for Africa, the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) and the UN World Food Programme (WFP).

At present, the study has also been completed in Burkina Faso, Ghana, Malawi, Rwanda, Swaziland and is underway in Chad. Madagascar is the tenth country to have completed the study following an official request for technical support to the Commission of the African Union in January 2015. In the next phase, the study will be undertaken in Botswana, Cameroon, Kenya, Lesotho, Mozambique and Mauritania.

Learn more about the launch event: UN News Centre, La Gazette

Learn more about the Cost of Hunger in Africa: The Cost of Hunger in Africa

 

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