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Sunday, May 26, 2024

71M people face poverty due to war in Ukraine, says UN

Nearly 51M people fell below poverty line in 1st 3 months of Moscow-Kyiv war which started in February

Some 71 million people have faced poverty due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, according to the UN Development Program (UNDP).

The impact of the war on food and energy prices is expected to increase the number of poor in the world.

According to the UNDP report on the effects of the Russia-Ukraine war, approximately 51 million people fell below the poverty line in the first three months of the war which started on Feb. 24.

Read more: Defiant Putin says Russia ‘doing everything right’ in Ukraine

Increasing the number of the poor in the world to 9%, the war has also caused the daily income of around 20 million people to fall below the poverty line of $3.20 in lower-middle-income countries.

Meanwhile, the COVID-19 pandemic caused up to 163 million people to fall below the poverty line last year, while increasing the number of people working for $2.15 a day by 8.1%, which is the extreme poverty line.

The World Bank estimates that this year, the figure will rise by 75-95 million.

Read more: G20 to meet under Ukraine war, inflation cloud

Also, food inflation is expected to further hit the poor, while it is estimated that two-thirds of per capita income will be spent on food expenditures in lower-income countries, while this rate is expected to reach a quarter of the income in developed countries.

The World Bank said it planned to reduce the ratio of the poor to 3% by 2030 as a difficult target to reach based on pre-pandemic projections, while the target has become harder to achieve with the coronavirus pandemic.

Half of the poor live in South Asia

According to UN data, half of the world’s income earners below the extreme poverty line live in South Asia.

The poor in sub-Saharan Africa account for one-third of the world’s poor, while the number of poor in the Middle East and North Africa has more than doubled since 2015.

Although the internal conflicts in Syria and Yemen had the biggest impact on the Middle East, the effects of the pandemic were experienced by all income groups.

Read more: India denies to open upcoming UN vote on Ukraine

COVID-19 has dealt the biggest blow to the global goals to reduce poverty in the last 30 years, the data showed.