News / Africa

    Report: Africa Not on Track to Meet Poverty Targets

    Report: Africa Not on Track to Meet Poverty Targets
    Report: Africa Not on Track to Meet Poverty Targets

    The World Development Indicators 2010 has been released by the World Bank and shows that all regions except sub-Saharan Africa are on track to meet the poverty reduction target.  

    World Development Indicators program manager Eric Swanson says this year's report from the World Bank shows progress is being made to fight poverty in poor and middle-income countries around the world.  

    "Progress started very slowly in the first part of the new millennium and many of the targets that were collected were very ambitious," Swanson said. "But we have seen an acceleration, more countries on track to reach the targets individually and globally the averages are starting to look better."

    This year's World Development Indicators focuses on the Millennium Development Goals, which are now in their 10th year.

    The eight Millennium Development Goals are targets to fight poverty, hunger, and disease by 2015.

    Some regions are already reaching those targets, says Swanson. In education, 50 countries have already reached the target to educate every child at least through primary school. And poverty is reducing at a rapid pace - particularly in Asia.

    But in each of the eight categories, sub-Saharan Africa lags behind. Child mortality remains high, as does maternal mortality, HIV and malaria continues to spread, and the percentage of children in education is still lower than any other region in the world.

    Swanson says sub-Saharan Africa faces a number of obstacles.

    "You have had a decade or more in Africa of very slow economic progress in the nineties," Swanson said. "You have had civil war and other disruptions, you have had poor governance in many countries that has not allowed the economy to grow and, in particular, has not allowed poor people to share in the benefits of growth."

    But he says progress is being made.  In Eritrea and Malawi child mortality has fallen sharply.  

    "I think that shows that it is possible to make progress in Africa in spite of obstacles," Swanson said. "Malawi is a landlocked state, it is one of the ones we tend to worry most about, and yet it has demonstrated that when you focus attention on a problem you can make progress."

    Jasmine Burnley, a policy advisor for the Britain-based charity Oxfam, says the biggest obstacle to meeting the Millennium Development Goals is finance.  She says unfair trade agreements and subsidies given by rich countries to their own agriculture sectors stifle Africa's economy.

    "There are overall economic reforms which need to be made to help Africa get closer to the Millennium Development Goals, but a lot of it is about the financing," Burnley said.

    The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said last week that international donors are failing to meet their aid targets - and as a result Africa has received less than half the extra aid it has been promised.


    Diaa Bekheet

    Diaa Bekheet has worked for a host of media outlets. He is currently an editor for our main English site, VOAnews.com.

    You May Like

    Russian-speaking Muslim Exiles Fear Possible Russia-Turkey Thaw

    Exiled from Russia as Islamic radicals and extremists, thousands found asylum in Turkey

    US Presidential Election Ends at Conventions for Territorial Citizens

    Citizens of US territories like Guam or Puerto Rico enjoy participation in US political process but are denied right to vote for president

    UN Syria Envoy: 'Devil Is in the Details' of Russian Aleppo Proposal

    UN uncertain about the possible humanitarian impact of Russian proposal to establish escape corridors in Aleppo

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Uganda Unveils its First Solar-powered Busi
    X
    July 28, 2016 4:16 AM
    A solar-powered bus described by its Ugandan makers as the first in Africa has made its public debut. Kiira Motors' electric bus, Kayoola, displayed recently at a stadium in Uganda's capital. From Kampala, Maurice Magorane filed this report narrated by Salem Solomon.
    Video

    Video Uganda Unveils its First Solar-powered Bus

    A solar-powered bus described by its Ugandan makers as the first in Africa has made its public debut. Kiira Motors' electric bus, Kayoola, displayed recently at a stadium in Uganda's capital. From Kampala, Maurice Magorane filed this report narrated by Salem Solomon.
    Video

    Video Silicon Valley: More Than A Place, It's a Culture

    Silicon Valley is a technology powerhouse and a place that companies such as Google, Facebook and Apple call home. It is a region in northern California that stretches from San Francisco to San Jose. But, more than that, it's known for its startup culture. VOA's Elizabeth Lee went inside one company to find out what it's like to work in a startup.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Philadelphia Uses DNC Spotlight to Profile Historic Role in Founding of United States

    The slogan of the Democratic National Convention now underway in Philadelphia is “Let’s Make History Again” which recognizes the role the city played in the foundation of the United States in the 18th century. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, local institutions are opening their doors in an effort to capitalize on the convention spotlight to draw visitors, and to offer more than just a history lesson.
    Video

    Video A Life of Fighting Back: Hillary Clinton Shatters Glass Ceiling

    Hillary Clinton made history Thursday, overcoming personal and political setbacks to become the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major U.S. political party. If she wins in November, she will go from “first lady” to U.S. Senator from New York, to Secretary of State, to “Madam President.” Polls show Clinton is both beloved and despised. White House Correspondent Cindy Saine takes a look at the life of the woman both supporters and detractors agree is a fighter for the ages.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video First Time Delegate’s First Day Frustrations

    With thousands of people filling the streets of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, VOA’s Kane Farabaugh narrowed in on one delegate as she made her first trip to a national party convention. It was a day that was anything but routine for this United States military veteran.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora