Tag Archives: poor

PAKISTAN: Reinventing microfinance

Source: Microfinance Focus

"Although microfinance has made some gains in alleviating poverty in Pakistan, the amount invested lies in danger of being spent on daily items owing to extreme poverty. What in fact is required is the provision of certain services that may enable an individual to become a self-earner. So the first and foremost thing in this regard is not to simply extend credit but to provide raw materials along with skills.

What could further be added is the provision of health and education facilities to the community so that each individual keeps on learning during this process. By adopting this method, microfinance becomes a well-organized business as well as a community service and the incidence of default is reduced."

Full article: http://www.microfinancefocus.com/news/2010/02/03/opinion-reinventing-microfinance-in-pakistan/

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First, Reform the I.M.F.

Published: April 24, 2009

The International Monetary Fund turns 65 this year. Until the current economic crisis, it had reduced its workload drastically to a near-retirement level — its total loan portfolio plummeted by 92 percent in four years. But like many senior citizens, the Fund has kept working past retirement age — and is now expanding its responsibilities.

The I.M.F. has a track record that seems to have been almost completely ignored in discussions of a proposed $750 billion increase in its resources. Nearly 12 years ago, a financial crisis hit Thailand, South Korea, Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia. The word “contagion” became part of the financial reporting lexicon as the crisis spread to Russia, Brazil, Argentina and other countries. Continue reading

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Rich countries launch great land grab to safeguard food supply

Small farmers at risk from industrial-scale deals

Julian Borger, diplomatic editor, The Guardian, Saturday November 22 2008

Rich governments and corporations are triggering alarm for the poor as they buy up the rights to millions of hectares of agricultural land in developing countries in an effort to secure their own long-term food supplies. The head of the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, Jacques Diouf, has warned that the controversial rise in land deals could create a form of “neo-colonialism”, with poor states producing food for the rich at the expense of their own hungry people. Rising food prices have already set off a second “scramble for Africa”. This week, the South Korean firm Daewoo Logistics announced plans to buy a 99-year lease on a million hectares in Madagascar. Its aim is to grow 5m tonnes of corn a year by 2023, and produce palm oil from a further lease of 120,000 hectares (296,000 acres), relying on a largely South African workforce. Production would be mainly earmarked for South Korea, which wants to lessen dependence on imports. Continue reading

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1.4 billion are still very poor

The World Bank’s has published new poverty figures and revisited the $1 poverty line and set a $1.25 poverty line according to 2005 prices.

On the basis of the new poverty line, 1.4 billion very poor people live in this world, of which 337 million live in East Asia and 596 million in South Asia. The Asian continent is the home for more than two thirds of the World’s poor.

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POVERTY: World Bank report on poverty, including India’s

Source: POVERTY: World Bank report on poverty, including India’s

The World Bank has released a new report on poverty. From the press release:

New data show 1.4 billion live on less than $1.25 a day, but progress against poverty remains strong

WASHINGTON, DC, August 26, 2008 – The World Bank said improved economic estimates showed there were more poor people around the world than previously thought while also revealing big successes in the fight to overcome extreme poverty.

The new estimates, which reflect improvements in internationally comparable price data, offer a much more accurate picture of the cost of living in developing countries and set a new poverty line of US$1.25 a day. They are based on the results of the 2005 International Comparison Program (ICP), released earlier this year. Continue reading

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World Bank Updates Poverty Estimates for the Developing World

WB: August 26, 2008New poverty estimates published by the World Bank reveal that 1.4 billion people in the developing world (one in four) were living on less than US$1.25 a day in 2005, down from 1.9 billion (one in two) in 1981.

The new numbers show that poverty has been more widespread across the developing world over the past 25 years than previously estimated, but also that there has been strong—if regionally uneven—progress toward reducing overall poverty.

Looking at the new estimates from the perspective of the Millennium Development Goals, a set of internationally agreed development targets, the developing world is still on track to halve extreme poverty from its 1990 levels by 2015. This is the first of eight critical goals. Continue reading

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UN report: Legal empowerment helps ameliorate poverty

Lloyd Axworthy , Winnipeg, Canada | Sat, 07/05/2008 12:21 PM | Opinion

Overshadowed by news of catastrophic food shortages in many parts of the world, natural disasters in Burma and China, and rising gas prices, was the release of a report by a United Nations-sponsored commission that offers a refreshing set of proposals to deal with the grinding reality of poverty, which afflicts two-thirds of the world’s population.

The report’s focus is not another call for more foreign aid, a demand for revision of trade policies or a radical push to foster confrontation between the developed and developing worlds. Rather, the report on The Legal Empowerment of The Poor makes the singular point that if the poor are empowered to exercise basic legal rights, they can and will be the agency of their own poverty reduction.

Full recognition of legal identity, assured access to the courts, basic labor protection, the right to own property and the rule of law to prevent exploitation by the powerful are vital tools to enable the poor to realize their full potential. Continue reading

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