Friday, June 01, 2012

Growing economy - growing poverty

Africa's growth has remained above 5 percent in the last eight years, and the  IMF growth forecasts for Africa in 2012 at 5.4 percent but poverty is not falling anywhere near as fast.

Marcelo Giugale, World Bank Director of Economic Policy and Poverty Reduction Programmes for Africa, was asked if the continent was growing fast enough to fight dire poverty. "The short answer is 'No'. It's not enough to reduce poverty, not by enough," he said.The World Bank estimated on its website in March that the percentage of poor Africans fell from 58 percent in 1999 to 47.5 percent in 2008, a decline of about one percentage point a year. He added that when high inflation accompanied growth - as it has in much of Africa - the impact on poverty was severe. While growth was not enough by itself for poverty to fall, high inflation was enough to guarantee it would rise because price rises hit the poor the hardest.

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