Extreme poverty rate set to fall below 10% by end of 2015

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A slum area in Cambodia. Photo: World Bank/Masaru Goto

The number of people living in extreme poverty around the world is likely to fall to under 10 per cent of the global population in 2015, according to World Bank projections.

The bank is using an updated international poverty line of US$1.90 a day, up from the previous level of US$1.25.

Daniel Dickinson reports.

Using the US$1.90 a day rate, the World Bank projects that global poverty will fall to 702 million people, or 9.6 per cent of the global population, this year.

That's down from 902 million people or 12.8 per cent of the global population in 2012.

World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said that the reductions in poverty were due to strong growth rates in developing countries in recent years.

But he said there was still a lot of work to do.

“By 2020, just about half of all people living in extreme poverty will be living in fragile and conflict-affected states. So we really have our work cut out for us. We know we’ve made a lot of progress. Growth in emerging markets over the past five years, even during the crisis, has of course helped lift many out of extreme poverty."

The US$1.90 poverty line incorporates new information on differences in the cost of living in the world's poorest countries.

The figure preserves the real purchasing power of the previous rate of $1.25 a day which reflected 2005 prices.

Daniel Dickinson, United Nations

Duration: 1’10″


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