The United Nations has reported that a further 100 million people could slip below the poverty line in the year 2020. The global target to eradicate poverty by 2030 seems now to be but a pipe dream given the release of the latest figures.
The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), has issued a new policy brief stating that the COVID-19 pandemic and other factors that were a direct result of the pandemic, has taken a toll globally. Global economics and the livelihoods of most citizens have been adversely affected by the pandemic making prospects of ending global poverty highly unlikely.
The UNDESA is set to head the International Day for the eradication of poverty which happens every year on October 17th. The release of the brief titled, ‘The longterm impact of the COVID 19 crisis on poverty was released early enough to enable stakeholders to better prepare for the days’ conference set to take place online.
The report stated that the pandemic had reversed years of progress in the fight against poverty. The Global Index is sure to go into reverse gear when the dust settles.
The World Bank has also added its’ voice to the report and echoed statements made by UN DESA. It estimates that between 70 million and 100 million more people will be forced into extreme poverty in 2020. This will push back the efforts to eradicate global poverty five years in reverse.
An earlier report of the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP) had put the numbers much lower at 32 million. UN DESA says the latest numbers are updated and are more accurate than the earlier released ones.
UN DESA has now called on countries worldwide to adopt policies that will protect the society’s’ impoverished citizens from falling way below the poverty line. These policies mainly include addressing the high levels of inequality, especially in developing countries.
Countries are expected to give priority to policies that will cushion its citizens, such as those addressing systemic inequalities in access to education, the labour market, access to essential services and healthcare.