Towards the end of poverty?

From June until the end of the year, government officials and some international organizations come together to develop the next Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to reduce poverty.

Harry Truman said in 1949 that "more than half of the people in the world live in conditions close to misery" . Today their number has decreased by half a percentage compared to the total population in developing countries, it went from 43% to 21% , a decrease of nearly 1 billion people.

Recently, several representatives of states and some international organizations met to define the new list Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) set up in September 2000 and that will expire in 2015.
Their goals are to find a way to reduce by a billion the number of people living in extreme poverty by 2030.

The achievements of the MDGs to reduce poverty were impressive. Although some objectives such as reducing infant mortality by 3/4 or child mortality by 2/3 will not be achieved, the goal of reducing poverty by half between 1990 and 2015 was reached five years ago.

However MDGs are not solely responsible for this effort , capitalism and free trade helped the economy to grow leading to poverty reduction. Also, the poverty rate began to collapse in the late 20th century, due to the fact that growth in developing countries has accelerated from an annual average growth of 4.3% in 1960-2000 to 6% in 2000-2010.

China (which never shown an interest in the MDGs) is responsible to itself alone of 3/4 of these efforts . Its economy has experienced an important growth despite rising inequality, extreme poverty tended to disappear from 84% in 1980 to 10% today.

However, it is now more difficult than before to reduce the number of poor people by an additional billion. Indeed, the experience of China government would be difficult to repeat in countries like India or Africa, which are the next challenges of the MDGs. In addition, it is harder to get people out of poverty over the critical threshold of $1,25 per day because this population has decreased over the years.

Caution is therefore required but this could be achieved if the developed countries continue to maintain the growth they maintain since 2000. In addition, if the poorest countries are not set aside and if inequality does not tend to rise, extreme poverty in developing countries could increase from 16% to 3% in 2030.

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Tags: poverty, microfinance, MicroWorld, micro-entrepreneurs, MDGs, Millennium Development Goals