By Julia Wanjiru, OECD Sahel and West Africa Club Secretariat
Burkina Faso is a poor, land-locked West African country, with about 18.5 million people, a number that is increasing fast at 3.1% per year. Categorised as a Least Developed Country (LDC), Burkina Faso regularly ranks at the bottom end of the Human Development Index (183 in 2015). Poverty is mostly rural (50.7% rural poor compared with 19.9% urban poor). Food insecurity and malnutrition remain a chronic concern (Global Acute Malnutrition = 8.6%).
Despite the large number of people living in poverty and the fact that the people of Burkina Faso are among the most vulnerable in the world, they also are very resilient. The Burkinabe ability to adjust and cope with shocks (climate-related, social or political) is outstanding. Indeed, Burkina Faso (and many West African countries) would be an interesting case for the OECD Better Life Index, which measures people’s well-being and societal progress.
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