While the decline in poverty rates in Africa may be a source of hope, the high concentration of extreme poverty is becoming a cause for concern.
Today, the continent is home to more than 60% of the world’s extremely poor, and this rate is expected to rise to 90% in 2030, according to the World Bank.
This development is all the more worrying as Africa only had a quarter of the world’s poor in 1990. The bank says turbulence caused by the coronavirus pandemic and climate change is to blame.
Extreme poverty is measured by the number of people living on less than $1.90 a day. While Africa has the largest number of people living in extreme poverty in the world, the disparities are even greater within the continent itself. In Mali, Nigeria, Malawi, Madagascar, Lesotho and Congo, more than 70% of the population is affected by this UN definition.
Approximately 30 million Africans fell into extreme poverty in 2020 due to the health crisis and 39 million more are at risk of falling into extreme poverty this year.
World Day of the Poor which is a creation of the Catholic church is meant to draw attention to the plight of the poorest, is marked every November 14th.