Poverty is in Decline All Over the World

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A new report by Oxford University’s poverty and human development initiative finds that acute poverty is in decline and could be eradicated in some of the poorest countries in the world within the next 20 years if their poverty reduction initiatives continue at present rates.

Some of these countries include Rwanda, Nepal and Bangladesh, which are classified as “star performers” and could see deprivation eliminated  within the lifetimes of current generations. Other countries excelling in their poverty reduction efforts include Ghana, Tanzania, Cambodia and Bolivia.

In addition, the UN’s latest report on the Human Development Index (HDI) indicated that efforts to eradicate poverty all over the world were “exceeding all expectations.”  Indeed, the HDI levels show consistent improvements in most of the 187 countries that were evaluated, and no country for which there was complete data has a lower HDI score than it did in 2000.

These positive results can be attributed to both national and international aid, which has led to improvements in schools, health care, housing, infrastructure and access to clean water. An additional influential factor is international trade, which has been particularly beneficial in countries like Afghanistan, Rwanda, Ethiopia, and Sierra Leone.

The findings of this study reinforce the importance and effectiveness of international aid. The continued rapid improvement will pay many dividends for the donor countries, especially in terms of reduced instability in foreign markets and increased purchasing power of potential new consumers all over the world.

– Caroline Poterio Martinez

Source: The Guardian, UNDP
Photo: Flickr

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