Washington | India accounted for the largest number of poor people in any country in 2012, but its poverty rate was lowest among countries having large number of poor population, a latest World Bank report has said. According to the report, the number of people living in extreme poverty around the world is likely to fall to under 10 per cent of the global population in 2015. India was home to the largest number of poor in 2012, but its poverty rate is one of the lowest among those countries with the largest number of poor, the bank said.
Giving fresh evidence that a quarter-century-long sustained reduction in poverty is moving the world closer to the historic goal of ending poverty by 2030, it said a new methodology applied to household surveys in India suggests that its poverty rate could be even lower. According to the report, the poverty rate in low-income countries averages 43 per cent in 2012, compared to 19 per cent in lower-middle-income countries.
Yet lower middle-income countries are home to about half of the global poor, compared to a third for low-income countries. Part of the reason is that four nations with the largest populations were once classified as low-income but have moved into lower-middle-income category and those counties are China, India, Indonesia and Nigeria. Noting that connective infrastructure is a crucial means of linking the farms and firms where the poor live and work to markets, the bank said rural electrification in India has caused changes in consumption and earnings, with increase in the labour supply of both men and women, and promoted girls schooling by reallocating their time to tasks more conducive to school attendance.
Investment in integration and connectedness through railroads in India helped reduce the exposure of agricultural prices and real income to rainfall shocks, and helped diminish the famine and mortality risks associated with recurrent weather shocks, it said.
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