Global Poverty Could Increase For 1st Time In 30 Years Due To Coronavirus

Global Poverty Could Increase For 1st Time In 30 Years Due To Coronavirus

Global poverty
Global poverty could increase for the first time in 30 years due to the coronavirus pandemic and the impact of shutdowns on the global economy. Photo by Malcolm Garret from Pexels

The coronavirus pandemic could push more than 500 million people into poverty, marking the first time in 30 years that global extreme poverty has increased, according to Oxfam International.

Oxfam’s new report, “Dignity Not Destitution”, presents fresh analysis which suggests that between 6 and 8 percent of the global population could be forced into poverty as governments shut down entire economies to manage the spread of the virus.

The research published by the United Nations University’s World Institute for Development Economics Research warned that about 500 million people could be pushed into poverty as economies around the world shrink because of the coronavirus outbreak.

“The impact will be quite devastating,” noted co-author Andy Sumner, an international development professor at King’s College London. “COVID could lead to a very large increase in global poverty, in fact, it could send the world back 10 years and could send some regions back 30 years,” he said.

Summer called this a “poverty tsunami”.

Oxfam urged world leaders to agree on a $2.5 trillion economic rescue plan to “to keep poor countries and poor communities afloat”.

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“Those who have the least are being hit the hardest, and this worrying new research shows that the pandemic could force half-a-billion more people around the world into poverty,” said Oxfam chief Danny Sriskandarajah.

“The choices being made now could have profound implications for our collective future. We must build back better; permanently changing our economies to create a fairer, more sustainable world.”