World Economy

1.2b Live on Less Than $1.25/Day

1.2b Live on Less Than $1.25/Day1.2b Live on Less Than $1.25/Day

More than 1.2 billion people are living on less than $1.25 a day and 2.4 billion are living on less than $2 a day, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said.

He told the UN observance of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty that at least 700 million people were lifted out of extreme poverty between 1990 and 2010 and he is determined to help UN make “poverty history,” Arab News reported Sunday.

Since the beginning of the financial crisis in 2008, Ban said inequality has grown more pronounced and discrimination against women and girls remains “a blatant injustice.” He warned that, “entrenched poverty and prejudice and vast gulfs between wealth and destitution, can undermine the fabric of societies and lead to instability.”

The UN chief pointed to the Ebola crisis in West Africa, saying the disease is not only threatening health but economic progress and the inroads against poverty being made in the three hardest-hit countries, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.

The observance coincided with the release of a UN report by international experts on financing sustainable development which cited research from the Brookings Institution showing that about $66 billion is needed annually to increase incomes of the poorest to $1.25 a day.

Finnish Ambassador Pertti Majanen, co-chair of the experts committee, said that government aid to developing countries is about double that amount.