World Statistics Day 2020: 15 Statistics You Should Know

Published: 20 October, 2020 14:55 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Mumbai

On World Statistics Day, we handpicked data from international organisations to give you some perspective

Photo used for representational purposes only. Pic/iStock
Photo used for representational purposes only. Pic/iStock

World Statistics Day is observed on October 20 around the globe. Data helps us make sense of complex issues and puts everything in context. Under the guidance of the United Nations Statistical Commission, this year’s theme is ‘connecting the world with data we can trust’, which reflects the significance of authoritative data, trust, and innovation.

With Coronavirus, we have gotten used to getting bombarded with data which may get overwhelming at times. Below, we’ve handpicked a few statistics you should know of, sourced from global reputable organisations, to give you some perspective.


In 2018, there were an estimated 228 million cases of malaria globally and the estimated number of malaria deaths stood at 405,000.

Cardiovascular Diseases

According to the World Health Organization, Cardiovascular diseases account for 31 percent (5.5 million) of all global deaths every year. It is the number one cause of death globally, even though 80 percent of premature deaths from stroke and heart disease can be avoided if individuals take preventive action. 

Mental Health

As per the World Health Organisation (WHO),

1 person dies every 40 seconds by suicide, with close to 800,000 deaths every year.

1 in 4 (25 percent) people in the world will be affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives. Treatments are available, but nearly two-thirds (66 percent) of people with a known mental disorder never seek help from a health professional.


According to the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS),

In 2019, there were roughly 38 million people living with HIV. Out of whom, about 7.1 million did not know that they were living with HIV.

75.7 million have become infected with HIV while 32.7 million have died from AIDS-related illnesses since the start of the epidemic.


As per the World Bank, taking into account the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is estimated that an additional 88 million to 115 million people will be pushed into extreme poverty ($1.90 a day), bringing the total to between 703 and 729 million.

According to the Asian Development Bank, the proportion of employed Indian population below $1.90 purchasing power parity a day in 2019 is 10.7 percent.

Violence against Women

Global estimates published by the WHO in 2017 indicate that about 1 in 3 (35 percent) of women worldwide have experienced either sexual and/or physical violence in their lifetime.

Globally, male intimate partners are responsible for as many as 38% of murders of women.

Meat Consumption

According to People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA),

Globally, cattle consume a quantity of food equal to the caloric needs of 8.7 billion people – more than the entire human population on Earth.

A purely vegetarian diet requires only 1,137 litres of water per day, while a meat-based diet requires more than 15,160 litres of water per day.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimates that animal agriculture is responsible for 18 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions, which is more than all transportation emissions combined.

Climate Refugees

The International Federation of the Red Cross estimates there are as many as 50 million climate refugees.

Roughly 1,900 disasters triggered 24.9 million new displacements across 140 countries and territories in 2019. This is the highest figure recorded since 2012 and three times the number of displacements caused by conflict and violence. Out of these 24.9 million, 23.9 million were weather-related.


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