KAMPALA, Uganda has improved in this year's United Nations Human development Index rankings (HDI), reflecting a progress in the country's overall well-being of its citizens.

The report released by United Nations Development Programme; a UN agency indicates that Uganda leapt one place on the index of 185 countries ranked, from the 164 position to the 163 position. Kenya and Tanzania, however, still rank above Uganda in position 145 and 151 respectively.

Worldwide Norway ranks first, followed by Australia, Switzerland and Denmark in second, third and fourth positions respectively.

According to UN, the idea behind this ranking isn't the wealth (GDP) a country has but rather how well it looks after its people.

Thus HDI not only incorporates measures for income (per capita income), but also life expectancy and education levels into a single development score, which is designed to give a holistic sense of how a country is doing.

UN said the report provides a good opportunity for countries to chart progress in the welfare of its people.

Releasing the results, UN also released the list of the most improved countries, naming China, Singapore, Iran, Mozambique and Rwanda as the six most improved countries.

However, of these Rwanda made the most impressive progress, leaping by three points on the index since 1990 when the rankings were started.

UN said Rwanda's progress is exceptional given its fractious past where much of its development was pegged back because of genocide.

UN said overall all 142 countries with complete data (for a few places, such as Ethiopia and Somalia, some data was missing) are more developed than they were a quarter of a century ago, 'except unlucky Swaziland', which has been ravaged by AIDS.

On the other hand countries that have recorded negative progress are Tajikistan, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Lesotho and Central African Republic.


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