'India, China growth helped poverty eradication'
Washington: Thanks to rapid growth in India and China, two-thirds of developing countries are on track or close to meeting key targets for tackling extreme poverty and hunger, the World Bank and IMF said on Saturday.
On the whole, the fight against poverty is progressing well, said the Global Monitoring Report 2011 noting based on current economic projections, the world remains on track to reduce by half the number of people living in extreme poverty.
"On current trends, and despite the recent global economic crisis, developing countries are on track to reach the global target of cutting income poverty in half by 2015, thanks in large part to rapid growth in China and India," it said.
The number of people living on less than USD 1.25 a day is projected to be 883 million in 2015, compared with 1.4 billion in 2005 and 1.8 billion in 1990.
"Much of this progress reflects rapid growth in China and India, while many African countries are lagging behind: 17 countries are far from halving extreme poverty, even as the aggregate goals will be reached," the report said.
India is also on track to meet the MDGs, but the scheduled tribes are largely off track, it said.
"Although educational enrolment rates are fairly high for all groups, scheduled tribes suffer from high under-five mortality, poor access to water and sanitation, nutrition deprivation, and low levels of adult literacy."
The report said India's strong growth-focused since the 1980s on moving from a state-controlled, inward-looking economy to an outward-oriented, market-led economy-has not been damped by its poorly performing targeted programmes.
Wars have led to shifts in priorities among international donors, it said noting "China and India, with some other developing countries, have emerged as economic powerhouses."
Trade bounced back in all developing regions, driven by a vibrant rebound in emerging economies. By 2010, all developing regions recovered to their pre-crisis export volumes, with East Asia and the Pacific and South Asia, especially China and India, leading this recovery.
"Good macroeconomic policies remain crucial to progress toward the MDGs," said Hugh Bredenkamp, deputy director of the IMF's Strategy, Policy, and Review Department.
"The challenge in low income countries is to sustain and accelerate growth through better policies that will create jobs and greater opportunities for the private sector.
"Advanced economies need to do their part to secure the global recovery, by repairing and reforming their financial systems and tackling their fiscal imbalances," he said.