millenium development goals

Fact sheet: Millennium Development Goals in Papua

The two Indonesian provinces of the eastern half of the New Guinea island, Papua and West Papua, score lowest in the UNDP MDG index of Indonesia. For not al 8 Millennium Development Goals complete data per province exists, but that available show a gloomy image for the Papua and West Papua provinces.

Goal 1: Eradicate Reduction of extreme poverty and hunger by half

In 2007 the national poverty rate is 16.6%, but there are large variations throughout Indonesia. For example, in 2007 the poverty rate for Jakarta was the lowest with only 4.6%, but in Papua it was almost 40.8%. 2004 found the widest poverty gap in the provinces of Papua. A Papuan is four times more likely to be poor than someone living in Kalimantan. Malnutrition of children under the age of five in Papua is also higher then the national average.

Goal 2: Primary education for all boys and girls

With 94.7%, Indonesia is close to enrolling almost all children in primary school, though this is the national rate which varies from 96% in Central Kalimantan to 78% in Papua. However, one quarter of these children does not graduate from primary school. Enrolment in junior secondary school is steadily increasing too. On a national level, 67% of all the children enrols in junior secondary school, in Papua it is less then 50% (only Nusa Tenggara Timur scores lower on this). Statistics among indigenous Papuans will be lower, as access to education is best guaranteed in urban areas, while indigenous Papuans live in rural areas. The Papua province has the lowest literacy of Indonesia. The main causes of low attendance and high dropout rates in Papua include the following:

  • The quality of available education is low;
  • The education system does not respond to local needs and circumstances, for example by using languages that they understand;
  • Schools are far from villages.

Goal 3: Gender equality and empowerment of women

Papua has the lowest life expectancy at birth for women, 50.3 years compared to the national average of 72.1 years. In 2002 women in Papua held the lowest literacy rate of all Indonesian provinces, with 67,5 per cent, versus 78,4 per cent of Papuan men and an 85,7 per cent country average for women). According to the churches, most Papuan girls in the remote coastal areas only complete elementary school, but in the central highland region, where half of indigenous population lives, girls do not even reach this level of education. One third of the seats of the Papuans People’s Council (MRP, representation of indigenous leaders that was designed as the centrepiece of the autonomy package) is reserved for women.

Goal 4: Reduction of child mortality

Child mortality in the Papua province is slightly lower then the national average, for the West Papua province, no statistics are available. For immunisation numbers are not available for Papua.

Goal 5: Reduction of maternal mortality

The maternal mortality rate in Papua is 1,116 per 100,000 births, which is the highest in Indonesia.

Goal 6: Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases

In Papua, HIV/AIDS prevalence among the general population (15-49 years age group) is the highest in Indonesia with 2.5%. 68% of HIV infected people are indigenous Papuans. A survey conducted in Papua in 2006 showed the use of condoms for commercial sex workers was only 14.1%. The provinces with the highest number of malaria cases are East Nusa Tenggara (70,390 cases), Papua (38,449 cases) and Maluku (10,824 cases). Especially in the Papuan highlands, access to medical services is problematic. The population does not trust this health structure because of unclear fees policy, non-local language speaking medical staff and problem of accessibility in case of emergency (people have to walk for hours in the mountain), lack of confidentiality and discrimination. The decentralisation process, pemekaran, transferred the responsibility of the public health policy to the district level, without control from the provincial level. National standard guidelines describing the level of care are not enforced and are not adjusted to local practices so that community primary health centres and village dispensaries are of a mediocre standard, lacking trained human resources to cover the needs.

Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability

Papua has the largest intact tropical rainforests in Indonesia, second largest in the world. This rainforests are the livelihood of a large part of the indigenous population. The development of palm oil plantations and illegal logging threaten this natural richness and livelihood. In 2006, 38.7% of households in Papua Province were using non-piped protected drinking water. This figure is 18.5% lower than the national figure.


Sources: “Let’s speak out for MDG’s. Achieving the millennium development goals in Indonesia 2007/2008” Bappenas and UNDP, “Human Development Index 1999-2005”, BPS Statistics Indonesia, “Papua Needs Assessment: An Overview of Findings and Implications for the Programming of development Assistance” UNDP 2005, “ Indonesia human development report 2004”, UNDP, Médecins du Monde (www.medicins