What are the MDGs?

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are eight international development goals that all 192 member states of the United Nations and at least 23 international organizations have adopted during the 2000 UN Millennium Summit. It provides specific, time-bound benchmarks that aim to eliminate extreme poverty by the year 2015. The eight MDGs along with its 21 targets and 60 indicators (used to measure the attainment of the MDGs) are as follows:

Goal 1. Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger

Target 1a: Reduce by half the proportion of people living on less than a dollar a day

1.1    Proportion of population below $1 (PPP) per day

1.2    Poverty gap ratio

1.3    Share of poorest quintile in national consumption

Target 1b: Achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all, including women and young people

1.4    Growth rate of GDP per person employed

1.5    Employment-to-population ratio

1.6    Proportion of employed people living below $1 (PPP) per day

1.7    Proportion of own-account and contributing family workers in total employment

Target 1c: Reduce by half the proportion of people who suffer from hunger

1.8    Prevalence of underweight children under-five years of age

1.9 Proportion of population below minimum level of dietary energy consumption

Goal 2. Achieve Universal Primary Education

Target 2a: Ensure that all boys and girls complete a full course of primary schooling

2.1    Net enrolment ratio in primary education

2.2    Proportion of pupils starting grade 1 who reach last grade of primary

2.3    Literacy rate of 15-24 year-olds, women and men

Goal 3. Promote Gender Equality And Empower Women

Target 3a: Eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education preferably by 2005, and at all levels by 2015

3.1    Ratios of girls to boys in primary, secondary and tertiary education

3.2    Share of women in wage employment in the non-agricultural sector

3.3    Proportion of seats held by women in national parliament

Goal 4. Reduce Child Mortality

Target 4a: Reduce by two thirds the mortality rate among children under five

4.1    Under-five mortality rate

4.2    Infant mortality rate

4.3    Proportion of 1 year-old children immunised against measles

Goal 5. Improve Maternal Health

Target 5a: Reduce by three quarters the maternal mortality ratio

5.1Maternal mortality ratio

5.2Proportion of births attended by skilled health personnel

Target 5b: Achieve, by 2015, universal access to reproductive health

5.3Contraceptive prevalence rate

5.4Adolescent birth rate

5.5Antenatal care coverage (at least one visit and at least four visits)

5.6Unmet need for family planning

Goal 6. Combat HIV/Aids, Malaria and Other Diseases

Target 6a: Halt and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS

6.1    HIV prevalence among population aged 15-24 years

6.2    Condom use at last high-risk sex

6.3    Proportion of population aged 15-24 years with comprehensive correct knowledge of HIV/AIDS

6.4    Ratio of school attendance of orphans to school attendance of non-orphans aged 10-14 years

Target 6b: Achieve, by 2010, universal access to treatment for HIV/AIDS for all those who need it

6.5    Proportion of population with advanced HIV infection with access to antiretroviral drugs

Target 6c: Halt and begin to reverse the incidence of malaria and other major diseases

6.6    Incidence and death rates associated with malaria

6.7    Proportion of children under 5 sleeping under insecticide-treated bednets

6.8    Proportion of children under 5 with fever who are treated with appropriate anti-malarial drugs

6.9    Incidence, prevalence and death rates associated with tuberculosis

6.10  Proportion of tuberculosis cases detected and cured under directly observed treatment short course

Goal 7. Ensure Environmental Sustainability

Target 7a: Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes; reverse loss of environmental resources

Target 7b: Reduce biodiversity loss, achieving, by 2010, a significant reduction in the rate of loss

Target 7a and 7b Indicators:


7.1    Proportion of land area covered by forest

7.2    CO2 emissions, total, per capita and per $1 GDP (PPP)

7.3    Consumption of ozone-depleting substances

7.4    Proportion of fish stocks within safe biological limits

7.5    Proportion of total water resources used

7.6    Proportion of terrestrial and marine areas protected

7.7    Proportion of species threatened with extinction

Target 7c: Reduce by half the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation

7.8    Proportion of population using an improved drinking water source

7.9    Proportion of population using an improved sanitation facility

Target 7d: Achieve significant improvement in lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers, by 2020

7.10  Proportion of urban population living in slums


Goal 8. Develop A Global Partnership For Development

Target 8a: Develop further an open, rule-based, predictable, non-discriminatory trading and financial system

Includes a commitment to good governance, development and poverty reduction; both nationally and internationally

Target 8b: Address the special needs of the least developed countries

Includes tariff and quota free access for the least developed countries' exports; enhanced programme of debt relief for heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC) and cancellation of official bilateral debt; and more generous ODA for countries committed to poverty reduction

Target 8c: Address the special needs of landlocked developing countries and small island developing States through the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States and the outcome of the twenty-second special session of the General Assembly

Target 8d: Deal comprehensively with the debt problems of developing countries through national and international measures in order to make debt sustainable in the long term.

Indicators for Targets 8a, 8b, 8c and 8d:

Some of the indicators listed below are monitored separately for the least developed countries (LDCs), Africa, landlocked developing countries and small island developing States.

Official development assistance (ODA)

8.1    Net ODA, total and to the least developed countries, as percentage of OECD/DAC donors; gross national income

8.2    Proportion of total bilateral, sector-allocable ODA of OECD/DAC donors to basic social services (basic education, primary health care, nutrition, safe water and sanitation

8.3    Proportion of bilateral official development assistance of OECD/DAC donors that is untied

8.4    ODA received in landlocked developing countries as a proportion of their gross national income

8.5    ODA received in small island developing States as a proportion of their gross national incomes

Market access

8.6    Proportion of total developed country imports (by value and excluding arms) from developing countries and least developed countries, admitted free of duty

8.7    Average tariffs imposed by developed countries on agricultural products and textiles and clothing from developing countries

8.8    Agricultural support estimate for OECD countries as a percentage of their gross domestic product

8.9    Proportion of ODA provided to help build trade capacity

Debt sustainability

8.10 Total number of countries that have reached their HIPC decision points and number that have reached their HIPC completion points (cumulative)

8.11 Debt relief committed under HIPC and MDRI Initiatives

8.12 Debt service as a percentage of exports of goods and services

Target 8e: In cooperation with pharmaceutical companies, provide access to affordable essential drugs in developing countries

8.13 Proportion of population with access to affordable essential drugs on a sustainable basis

Target 8f: In cooperation with the private sector, make available the benefits of new technologies, especially information and communications

8.14 Telephone lines per 100 population

8.15 Cellular subscribers per 100 population

8.16  Internet users per 100 population