Corruption is the biggest problem in fighting poverty

WB economist Basu speaks during a panel discussion titled "Poverty and Wealth" where the steps taken in order to fight against poverty have been discussed.

Corruption is the biggest problem in fighting poverty

World Bulletin/News Desk

World Bank Senior Vice President and Chief Economist Kaushik Basu has said corruption is the biggest problem in eliminating world poverty.

Basu spoke during a Monday panel discussion titled "Poverty and Wealth" where the steps taken in order to fight against poverty have been discussed.

Specifically underlining the corruption problem, Basu said in his speech in Columbia University in New York that World Bank funds reserved for poverty have sometimes been used in other fields.

Giving an example from his home country, "Corruption is a major problem in India. We figured out that funds that are meant to be given to needy people had been actually used for other purposes," he indicated.

"Progress in Africa is slower than expected"

Kaushik Basu said, "World Bank aims to reduce the number of people that have daily income of less than $1.25. Africa is the worst region in this regard. Even though we have seen some progress, poverty statistics are declining much slower than expected."

Basu said these numbers are far from their target, which is 3 percent, adding that in developing countries the poverty rate is around 6.3 percent while it is 5.5 percent worldwide.

Gender equality

Basu pointed out the huge gap between the rich and the poor, he warned, "it would be impossible to reach the goals regarding poverty even by 2030 in case necessary measures are not taken."

Basu stressed gender equality is another major issue in fighting poverty. He said, "if we want to reduce poverty rate, we need to achieve gender equality by empowering women."

Answering a question regarding poverty in Turkey, World Bank Vice President Kaushik Basu said, "I have followed Turkey very closely. Turkey has been pursuing a very innovative method in fighting poverty. Given this fact, Turkey is a great partner of the World Bank."

Last Mod: 12 Kasım 2013, 12:09
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