Bangladesh ahead of India, Pakistan in Global Hunger Index

War in Ukraine increased global food, fuel and fertilizer prices and has potential to contribute to food shortages in 2023 and beyond, report says

Bangladesh has ranked 84th out of 121 countries in the 2022 Global Hunger Index.

Its neighbouring countries India and Pakistan ranked 107 and 99 respectively in the index released on Friday.

The index calculates hunger levels and malnutrition across the world.

With a score of 19.6, Bangladesh has a level of hunger that is “moderate”. 

Its score was 19.1 last year when it ranked 76th in the index.

The Global Hunger Index score is calculated on four indicators – undernourishment, child wasting (the share of children under the age of five with low weight for their height), child stunting (children under the age of five with low height for their age), and child mortality (the mortality rate of children under the age of five).

Apart from “moderate”, the other categories of hunger are classified as “low”, “serious”, “alarming” and “extremely alarming”.

This year the report assessed data from 136 countries but evaluated 121 of them. The report on the index said sufficient data was not available for the remaining countries.

Globally, 17 countries – Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chile, China, Croatia, Estonia, Hungary, Kuwait, Latvia, Lithuania, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Turkey, and Uruguay – shared the top spot.

The report said global progress against hunger has largely stagnated in recent years and that African areas south of the Sahara and South Asia are the regions with the highest hunger levels.

“The situation [globally] is likely to worsen in the face of the current barrage of overlapping global crises – conflict, climate change, and the economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic – all of which are powerful drivers of hunger,” it said. 

“The war in Ukraine has further increased global food, fuel, and fertilizer prices and has the potential to contribute to food shortages in 2023 and beyond.”