New Delhi: India is no longer the country with the largest number of poor as Nigeria has taken that unwanted position, The Times of India reported citing a study published in the ‘Future Development’ blog of Brookings. According to the study, about 44 Indians come out of extreme poverty every minute, one of the fastest rates of poverty reduction in the world and if the trend continues, then India could drop to the number 3 position later this year with the Democratic Republic of the Congo taking the number 2 spot.
Defining extreme poverty as living on less than $1.9 a day, a recent study published in a Brookings blog says that by 2022, less than 3 per cent of Indians will be poor and extreme poverty could be eliminated altogether by 2030.
“At the end of May 2018, our trajectories suggest that Nigeria had about 87 million people in extreme poverty, compared with India’s 73 million. What is more, extreme poverty in Nigeria is growing by six people every minute, while poverty in India continues to fall,” TOI quoted the study published in the ‘Future Development’ blog of Brookings as saying.
However, because of differences in how poverty is measured, the estimates of extreme poverty reduction may not match with the numbers published by the Government of India, the TOI report said. According to the World Bank, between 2004 and 2011 poverty declined in India from 38.9 per cent of the population to 21.2 per cent (2011 purchasing power parity at $1.9 per person per day).
Economists say rapid economic growth has helped India eradicate extreme poverty. The TOI report quoting N R Bhanumurthy, professor at the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy said “assumption that India would be able to eliminate extreme poverty by 2030 seems realistic given the country’s record in the past 10 years in reducing poverty and its ability to meet the Millennium Development Goals.”
“Going ahead, the challenge is to meet the Sustainable Development Goals, which will help realise the study’s findings that India would be able to eliminate extreme poverty by 2030,” Bhanumurthy told TOI.