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Unformatted text preview: WORLD BANK/I M F: I N FOR MAT ION Dr amatic Decline I n Global Poverty, But Progress Uneven [http: / / /84RMEOWD20] April 23, 2004 - Poverty has declined significantly in developing countries over the past twenty years, but progress has been uneven, according to World Development Indicators 2004 (WDI), the World Bank's annual statistical report. The proportion of people living in extreme poverty on less than $1 a day dropped by almost half between 1981 and 2001, from 40 percent to 21 percent of the global population. In absolute terms, this means that the number people living in poverty fell from 1.5 billion in 1981 to 1.1 billion in 2001. Gross domestic product (GDP) per capita in all developing countries rose by 30 percent during the same time period. Dramatic Progress in East Asia East Asia was the poorest region in the world twenty years ago. Today, it is leading the developing world in economic growth and poverty reduction. Dramatic economic growth in the region has pulled more than 500 million people out of poverty, and the GDP per capita t ripled. The proportion of people living in extreme poverty fell from 58 to 16 percent. China alone lifted about 400 million of people out of absolute poverty. GDP per capita increased five times since 1981. The number of extremely poor people fell from over 600 million to slightly more that 200 million, or from 64 percent to 17 percent. This progress was fueled by economic reforms, openness to markets and competition, focus on private initiative and market mechanisms. "It is possible with these kinds of policies to achieve good performance on the growth front, and many other countries in the world are applying the same policies," said Franois Bourguignon, the World Bank's Chief Economist. Given the global recovery, we may expect that they will be able to benefit from that favorable evolution." Close to Half the Population in Sub-Saharan Africa Lives in Poverty Huge regional disparities remain, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa, where the number of poor people has increased significantly during the same time period and is projected to continue rising. In 1980, one out of every 10 poor people lived in Sub-Saharan Africa. In 2000, the figure rose to one out of every three. Future projections predict that one out of every two poor people will live in Sub-Saharan Africa. Between 1981 and 2001, the number of poor in Sub-Saharan Africa rose from 41 percent to 46 percent. In absolute numbers, this means that the number of poor jumped from 164 million to 314 million. The GDP per capita income fell some 14 percent. The depth of poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa is increasing, said Bourguignon. HIV/AIDS has had a devastating impact on the continent, reducing the life expectancy from 50 years in 1990 to 46 years of life expectancy in 2002....
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This note was uploaded on 06/06/2010 for the course POL S 186 taught by Professor Cohen during the Winter '10 term at UCSB.

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