8 Facts About Poverty in Colombia

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BOGOTA, Columbia — The Latin-American country of Colombia has been experiencing a poverty reduction among its citizens for the last 12 years.

The Departamento Administrativo Nacional de Estadística (DANE) analyzes and publishes the results and information about poverty issues in Colombia.

According to an article published by El Tiempo, DANE revealed that in 2014 both monetary poverty (when the income is insufficient for basic needs) and multidimensional poverty (based in education, health, employment, etc.) decreased in this country.

In the last four years, the number of people living under poverty conditions in Colombia fell by 3,613 million. Here are eight facts about poverty in the country of Colombia.

  1. Colombia has been experiencing a decrease in monetary poverty
    According to the DANE, in 2014 the percentage of people living in monetary poverty decreased in a 28.5 percent. Between a study from July 2012 – June 2013 to a study from July 2013 – June 2014, the number of Colombian people living under poverty conditions fell by 1,155 million.
  2. Colombia has been experiencing a decrease in extreme monetary poverty.
    The DANE stated that, in 2014 the percentage of people living under extreme monetary poverty decreased by 8.1 percent. In comparison between the DANE studies from July 2012 – June 2013 to the studies of July 2013 – June 2014, the number of people living under extreme poverty conditions in Colombia fell by 73,000.
  3. There is still a wide gap between urban and rural communities in Colombia.
    The gap formed between the rural and urban areas of Colombia is marked by the poverty, inequality, and violence situations that tend to be most present in rural areas. These issues hinder the development of the Colombian rural areas.
  4. Despite poverty reduction, Colombia has not experienced improvements in inequality terms.
    Inequality is calculated with the Gini coefficient, being 0 absolute equality and 1 absolute inequality. Colombia’s 2014 Gini coefficient was of 0.538, which was the same result as the two years before. The inequality issues in Colombia are evident among the differences that exist between the rural and urban areas of the country.
  5. Colombia has been experiencing a decrease in multidimensional poverty.
    According to the DANE, in 2014 the percentage of people living under a multidimensional poverty situation decreased by 21.9 percent.
  6. Violence and drug cartels are linked to poverty in Colombia.
    Colombia has been experiencing conflict and violence created by different armed groups, guerrillas, and drug cartels. The drug trade represents a way for these groups to obtain huge profits and because of these profits violence and conflict appears and perpetuates in the country.
  7. Lack of education mostly affects poor Colombian families.
    Lack of quality in education or not having the access to it becomes a problem, affecting poor families and their children, and this makes it harder for families to break or escape their poverty living conditions.
  8. Poverty is stronger in Colombian rural areas than in urban areas.
    Because of social inequality and violence, poverty in Colombia becomes stronger in remote rural areas or areas that are constantly stricken by violence or conflict. The lack of education and illiteracy in rural areas are other factors that make rural areas targets of extreme poverty.

Diana Fernanda Leon

Sources: El Tiempo, DANE 1, DANE 2, ABColombia, Rural Poverty Portal
Photo: Flickr

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