Namibia is relatively prosperous for a
country in Africa, but few countries in the world have
as large income differences as Namibia. The gaps are
huge between different parts of the country and between
different people groups. Most people now have access to
basic health care, but many still live in great poverty.
The HIV epidemic has hit the country hard.
Although the proportion of people who are considered
poor has decreased from almost 70 percent at
independence in 1990 to just over 17 percent in 2016,
the differences in living standards are still large.
According to the World Bank, Namibia has the most
unequal distribution of welfare in the world after South
Africa. The northern regions are poorer than the central
and southern parts, and blacks have fared worse than
whites. Many who are no longer classified as poor have
incomes that are just slightly above the poverty line.
The richest one-hundredth of the population consumes
more than the poorest half do. More than ten percent of
residents live below the national limit for extreme
poverty, which runs at 293 Namibian dollars, about SEK
190 per month for a family.
Countryaah Official Site:
Official statistics for population in Namibia, including population growth, density, and estimation in next 50 years.
Food shortages are a recurring problem, and up to
one-third of the population has been in need of food
assistance during the 2000s. One in four children suffer
from inhibited growth due to malnutrition. At the same
time, for example, infant mortality has declined
significantly since the 1990s. Today, a majority of
residents have access to clean water. Fewer than half,
however, have proper drainage systems and their own
Many social rights are guaranteed by law, such as the
protection of the elderly, disabled, orphans and the
sick. In reality, the resources needed are often
lacking. The government has a stated goal to invest in
primary care, not least in the most disadvantaged areas.
Second education is the largest expenditure in the state
budget. But the population is growing faster than, for
example, the number of care places. The AIDS crisis also
The HIV / AIDS epidemic
Namibia has been hit very hard by HIV / AIDS. Just
over a fifth of Namibians aged 15-49 were HIV-infected
when the situation was at its worst in 2002. The figure
has since fallen to around 15 percent. The government
allocates resources to prevent further spread and help
the infected. A large proportion of those who need it
receive brake medication. Special efforts are made to
prevent infection from mother to child. Because of the
AIDS crisis, there are many orphans in the country.
Namibia is also one of the countries in the world most
affected by tuberculosis.
Gender equality is guaranteed in Namibia's
constitution and a stated political goal for the
government. Many women participated in the struggle for
independence, which strengthened their position. Yet,
women are still financially weaker than men, and
violence against women is a very widespread problem.
According to the 2011 census, the majority of all
adults between the ages of 15 and 49 have never been
married. Only one-third of respondents stated that they
were married or cohabiting.
The division of labor between the sexes is generally
traditional in the countryside. Men and boys take care
of the animals and build and plow the earth. Women and
girls handle most of the agriculture, cook and care for
Grand families are most common - regardless of
whether the kinship is counted on the mother or the
father. Toddlers are carried on their backs and are
often breastfed up to two years of age. Childcare is
everyone's concern. Many live with relatives because of
their parents' work or that they themselves must be
close to school. Sometimes the children stay at home to
help in agriculture.
Sexual relationships between men are prohibited by
laws since the colonial era, although the law is not
usually applied. The Constitution prohibits
discrimination based on sexual orientation, but LGBT
people testify about harassment.
FACTS - SOCIAL CONDITIONS
29 per 1000 births (2018)
Percentage of HIV infected
11.8 percent (2018)
Proportion of HIV infected among young women
4.5 percent (2018)
Proportion of HIV infected among young men
2.6 percent (2018)
Proportion of population with access to clean
78.8 percent (2015)
Proportion of the population having access to
34.5 percent (2017)
Public expenditure on health care as a
percentage of GDP
8.9 percent (2015)
Public expenditure on health care per person
US $ 403 (2016)
Proportion of women in parliament
46 percent (2018)
The government is being reformed
President Pohamba is carrying out his first re-furnishings in the government
and, among other things, appoints Swapo's Deputy Chairman Hage Geingob as
Minister of Trade and Industry (see November 2007).