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Kabul - October 18, 2016 – Central Statistics Organization (CSO) of Afghanistan launched the highlights of the results of Balkh Socio-Demographic and Economic Survey (SDES) at the CSO office. In addition to the leadership of CSO, deputy ministers and authorized representatives from ministries, government officials from Balkh province, UNFPA representative and representatives from national and international organizations participated in the event.

Balkh is the ninth province where the Socio-Demographic and Economic Survey (SDES) was conducted in 2016 with the technical support of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and financial support from development partners.

The SDES is designed as a long term project to gather information on socio-economic and demographic status of population on a staggered provincial approach.  SDES is the largest survey ever conducted in Afghanistan that provides data and statistics for local development policy and planning.

Key Goals of SDES survey:

·         Collect data and figures to be used for evidence-based decision making, policy design, planning and management;

·         Collect statistics to be used by industries and businesses;

·         Provide data for the development of housing policies and programs;

·         Collect data on vulnerable populations;

·         Collect data for the delivery of humanitarian assistance;

·          For research purposes.

SDES covers all households in each village and urban area, where for every household the survey records the total number of household members by sex, and for the remaining every other household, the survey collects detailed socio-demographic and economic data about each of the household members.

Major indicators for which the data is collected are:

·         Age, sex, migration, education, literacy, functional difficulties, level of employment, birth, mortality, birth registration, household profile and housing (the same indicators are used in census).

·         One of the important dimensions of the survey which distinguishes it from other surveys is that the SDES data is generated at the district level and in some cases groups of villages.


Key findings of SDES in Balkh province are:

·         Sex ratio is 102 males per 100 females.

·         Youth population (15-24 age groups) accounts for 22.6 percent of Balkh’s total population.

·         Literacy rate among 15 years old and above is 41.9 percent which is above the national rate of 31.4 percent.

·         Literacy rate among the youth population (15-24 years) is 61.3 percent while it is 46.9 percent among the population aged 10 years and above.

·         The net attendance rate in high school in Balkh is 25.8 percent.

·         The birth registration rate in Balkh is 38.4 

·         In Balkh, 1.9 percent of the population aged 5 years old and above had at least one type of functional difficulty (seeing, hearing, walking, remembering, communicating or self-caring).

·         40 percent of the population 15 years and older did work during the past 12 months before the survey.

·         9.2 percent of the ever married women aged 15 years and above had given birth to at least one child.

·         About 17,000 infant deaths occurred during the two years before the date of survey. More male infant deaths (59.4 percent) compared to female infant deaths (40.6 percent).

·         Children below the age of 5 accounted for 29.8 percent of the total deaths.

·         Children below the age of 5 constituted 20.3 percent of the total deaths.

·         Average household size in Balkh province is 6.5 persons.

·         48.2 percent of the households in Balkh had access to improved sanitation facility.

·         53 percent of the households in Balkh had access to improved drinking water sources.

·         79.8 percent of the households in Balkh were reported to be owners of their housing units.

CSO acknowledges the residents of Balkh province for their contribution to the implementation of this survey. It is hoped that the findings of this survey are used by planners and policy makers for the purpose of improving people’s living conditions in the province.

Socio Demographic and Economic Survey (SDES) - Balkh Highlights