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Bangladesh is always in the news for a disaster of one sort or another. It is one of the poorest countries of the world, with a high population density, political instability and frequent natural disasters. The geography of the country makes it prone to cyclones and flooding. Poverty is made worse by political instability, and high levels of corruption. The last decade has seen significant progress, but it is still estimated that over 60 million people are below the US$1 per day absolute poverty line.

Bangladesh Key Statistics

Population: 150 million +

Area: 144,000 sq km (about half the size of New Zealand)

Religions: Muslim 86%, Hindu 13%, Christian 0.5%, Other 0.5%

Literacy: 43% of those over the age of 15

Per Capita GDP: US$1400 (NZ GDP in 2006 was US$24,400)

See the MDG Monitor site for up to date information on Bangladesh's progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals

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