A Multidimensional Vulnerability Index for the Maldives in times of Covid-19

A Multidimensional Vulnerability Index for the Maldives in times of Covid-19

This report by the Maldives Bureau of Statistics analyses the vulnerability of the population of Maldives to poverty during the Covid-19 pandemic using a Multidimensional Vulnerability Index (MVI).

The MVI identifies the vulnerable population who face more than three vulnerabilities to COVID-19, shows where these vulnerable groups live, and which deprivations increase their vulnerability. The MVI is, thus, a policy tool to direct action towards the most needed groups during COVID-19.

The index is based on data from the Household Income and Expenditure Survey 2019 (HIES 2019) and includes five dimensions measured at the household level: education, employment, health, housing and basic services. These dimensions have been selected to include the dimensions captured in the Maldives’ national MPI (launched in 2020 and based on 2016 data), and also to capture the impact of the pandemic on households.

Key findings include:

  • 29.4% of the population is multidimensionally vulnerable to poverty and experiences, on average, close to half of the weighted deprivations (47.6%). The overall MVI is 0.140.
  • Multidimensionally vulnerable individuals face the highest levels of deprivation in access to safe drinking water; living in a household with at least one youth who is not in education, employment or training (NEET); and, access to improved sanitation, followed by access to internet or IT assets.
  • 50% of the population living in the Atolls and 7% of the population in Male’ are vulnerable. The profile of overlapping deprivations in the Atolls and Male’ share some attributes, but are not the same. For instance, the dimension of basic services contributes the most to overall vulnerability in the Atolls, whereas the opposite is true in Male’.
  • Children under 18 years old and the elderly aged 65 and above are the most multidimensionally vulnerable age groups.
  • Households with any member living with disabilities experience significantly higher levels of multidimensional vulnerability than households without any member living with disabilities.

Citation: MBS (2022). A Multidimensional Vulnerability Index for the Maldives in Times of Covid-19. Maldives Bureau of Statistics, Ministry of National Planning, Housing and Infrastructure. Maldives.

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