World
More than 2.2 billion people poor - UN report
Publish Date: Jul 24, 2014
More than 2.2 billion people poor - UN report
Kisenyi slum in Kampala: Slums are common indicators of poverty. PHOTO/Andrew Masinde
  • mail
  • img
newvision

TOKYO - More than 2.2 billion people are "poor or near-poor", with financial crises, natural disasters, soaring food prices and violent conflicts threatening to exacerbate the problem, a United Nations report said Thursday.

While poverty is in decline worldwide, growing inequality and "structural vulnerabilities" remain a serious threat, said the report by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), released in Tokyo.

Nearly 1.5 billion people in 91 developing states live in poverty while another 800 million are teetering on the edge, it found.

"Eliminating extreme poverty is not just about 'getting to zero'; it is also about staying there," said the agency's 2014 Human Development Report.

"Those most vulnerable to natural disasters, climate change and financial setbacks must be specifically empowered and protected.

"Making vulnerability reduction central in future development agendas is the only way to ensure that progress is resilient and sustainable," it added.

The report, entitled "Sustaining Human Progress: Reducing Vulnerabilities and Building Resilience", called for making basic social services available to all and putting full employment at the top of the development agenda.

"Providing basic social security benefits to the world's poor would cost less than two percent of global GDP (gross domestic product)," it said.

"A basic social protection package is affordable so long as low-income countries reallocate funds and raise domestic resources, coupled with support by the international donor community."

About 1.2 billion people survive on the equivalent of $1.25 or less per day, the report found.

"If you are poor, you are less able to handle several shocks; you may also be disabled, you may also be older. So you have more layers of things against you," Khalid Malik, the report's lead author, told reporters ahead of its release on Thursday.

Key to dealing with the problem was focusing government policy on jobs and social safety nets, the report said.

"Structural vulnerabilities are often manifested through deep inequalities and widespread poverty," it said.

"The poor, women, minorities (ethnic, linguistic, religious, migrant, or sexual), indigenous peoples, people in rural or remote areas or living with disabilities, and countries landlocked or with limited natural resources tend to face higher barriers.

"Unemployment tends to be associated with an increase in crime, suicide, violence, drug abuse and other social problems. Therefore, the social benefits of a job far exceed the private benefit -- the wage."

UNDP chief Helen Clark and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe were set to deliver speeches in Tokyo on Thursday following the report's launch.

"By addressing vulnerabilities, all people may share in development progress and human development will become increasingly equitable and sustainable," Clark said in a statement accompanying the report.
 

Related Stories

67% of Ugandans vulnerable to poverty

More Africans in extreme poverty than in 1990: UN

Number of Ugandans below poverty line reduces

 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Ebola death toll climbs to 2,461
THE deadliest Ebola epidemic on record has now infected nearly 5,000 people in west Africa and killed around half of them, the World Health Organization has revealed...
1976 Entebbe raid: Ex-intelligence chief dies
Yitzhak Hofi, who played a key role in a 1976 Entebbe operation to free the passengers of a hijacked plane, has died at 87....
Murderer
Belgium, one of only a few countries to allow euthanasia, has accepted a serial rapist''s request that he be allowed to die....
Signs of N. Korea developing missile submarine
North Korea appears to be developing a new weapons system capable of launching submarine-based ballistic missiles, the South's defence ministry said Monday....
Death toll now 40 in Nigeria building collapse: rescuers
Forty people have now died as a result of a building collapse at the megachurch of one of Nigeria's most famous preachers and televangelists, the country's main rescue body said on Sunday....
Kerry drums up support for US
US Secretary of State John Kerry heads to Cairo on Saturday, amid a growing campaign to build a broad international coalition for a "war" against Islamic State extremists in Syria and Iraq....
Will early retirement solve Uganda’s unemployment problem?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter