World Bank – Some Statistics

The World Bank report reviews some information and figures about the state of the world in 2019. These figures contain some hopes and some failures. We selected some of those numbers that we believe are important for us to know if the goal is a more human world. The report states that some progress has been made in reducing the level of severe poverty in the world. About 30 years ago, one-third of the world’s population lived under poverty line; today only about 10% live with an income below US$ 1.9 per day. Between 2000 and 2015, 15 countries managed to lift 802.1 million people to above the poverty line, 7 countries of them are in Sub-Saharan Africa. Half of the 736 million people living in extreme poverty live in 5 countries in South Asia and some African countries, and about 85% or 629 million who are extremely poor live in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. According to a 2015 report, 23.88% of the world’s poor were in India and about 11.76% in Nigeria, meaning that it is much worse than India taking the difference in the total population into consideration. Then comes the Democratic Republic of the Congo by 7.49%, then Ethiopia by 3.67% then Bangladesh by about 3.32%, which represents about 50% of the world’s poor as defined by the World Bank.

Another issue affecting the stability of the global economy’s performance is what the report mentions about the temptations of continued interest rates falling for over a decade that led to a rise in loans of emerging and developing economies of the world by 54% between 2010 and 2018. With this thrust for borrowing, the size of loans for these economies – public and private – are at a historical record level as a percentage of the gross domestic product of their economies, within the limits of 170%. Repercussions of a severe crisis are going to happen unless these countries adopt policies to reduce their loan levels.

A third painful issue, which is perhaps the product of poverty and economic and political crises, is that of refugees. The report states that the number of those who had to leave their homes – internal and external migration –scored 70.8 million people in 2018. Five countries top the list of the deportees and migrants: the highest is Syria with just less than 7 million people, or about 10% of the total, then Afghanistan by just under 3 million people and the South Sudan and then Myanmar and Somalia.

In conclusion, all of the issues we mentioned are the result of the failure of public administrations is not only in adopting the wrong policies but also in the timing of being aware of these problems in advance which renders even good policies and decisions useless. This wrong timing which our regional states suffer from. Most suffering countries do not notice the absence of justice until it ends in violence. Most suffering countries do not pay attention to the risk of excessive borrowing until they fall into an inescapable trap, and most suffering countries are torn apart and push their people to migrate because they neglected building the foundations or rules of the state’s being.