Women and children fleeing from Boko Haram attacks sit at Kabalewa Refugees Camp in Niger on 13 March 2015
Women and children fleeing from Boko Haram attacks sit at Kabalewa Refugees Camp in Niger on 13 March 2015

Ahead of International Women's Day an annual report has revealed the hardest countries in which to grow up female, finding the index is topped predominately by African countries.

The Poverty is Sexist 2016 report by ONE, released Monday, compiled data from 166 countries to rank opportunity around the world.

The report index takes into account statistics across a range of subjects, including GDP per capita, school attendance by girls, access to bank accounts, the proportion of women in a paid job relative to men, the likelihood of death during childbirth, political representation by women and prevalence of anaemia among women.

The results found that the 20 toughest countries to be born a girl, are among the poorest - 18 are classified by the United Nations as 'Least Developed Countries', while 13 are on the World Bank’s list of ‘Fragile Situations’.

Niger was the hardest country for young women, followed by Somalia and Mali.

Scandinavian countries were the least difficult in which to grow up, the index found, with Norway placed above Sweden and Denmark to form the top three.

The UK ranked low down the index, 152nd out of 166, making it the 15th easiest country in which to grow up as a woman.

See the below map for a visual representation of the index (dark red is easier, yellow is harder):

The report outlined ten criteria for alleviating issues of poverty and disease which disproportionately affect women, including repealing discriminatory legislation, job opportunity and a focus upon global nutrition policies:

This is the year in which the world must deliver on the historic commitments it made during 2015. If civil society pulls together, governments deliver and the private sector provides targeted, strategic investments, we will be one step closer to reaching the end of extreme poverty and the girls and women that will help us get there.

To view an interactive version of the above map, and the full index results, click here.

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