India and Asia are solving extreme poverty problem but Nigeria and Africa are not

According the Brookings Institute projections, Nigeria has already overtaken India as the country with the largest number of extreme poor in early 2018, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo could soon take over the number 2 spot.


Above chart Source: Authors’ estimates based on PovCal (World Bank), World Economic Outlook (IMF); World Population Prospects (UN); Shared Socio-Economic Pathways (IIASA), World Income Inequality Database (UNU-WIDER); Algorithm developed by World Data Lab

At the end of May 2018, Nigeria has about 87 million people in extreme poverty, compared with India’s 73 million. Extreme poverty in Nigeria is growing by six people every minute, while poverty in India continues to fall. In fact, by the end of 2018 in Africa as a whole, there will probably be about 3.2 million more people living in extreme poverty than there are today.

Africans account for about two-thirds of the world’s extreme poor. If current trends persist, they will account for nine-tenths by 2030. Fourteen out of 18 countries in the world—where the number of extreme poor is rising—are in Africa.

Extreme poverty is defined as living on less than $1.9 a day.

Progress against global poverty but it is slower than target

Between January 1, 2016—when implementation of internationally agreed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) started—and July 2018, the world has seen about 83 million people escape extreme poverty.

If extreme poverty were to fall to zero by 2030, we should have already reduced the number by about 120 million, just assuming a linear trajectory. There is a shortfall of 35 million people escaping poverty over the last 2.5 years.

Progress against global poverty is slowing

The world needed to reduce poverty by 1.5 people every second to achieve the 2030 goal but we have been moving at a pace of only 1.1 people per second.

Brookings projections show that by 2020, the pace could fall to 0.9 people per second, and to 0.5 people per second by 2022.

Asia is solving its extreme poverty problem.
Extreme Poverty is not getting solved in Africa.

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