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Pandemic, Inflation Push 68 Million More In Asia Into Extreme Poverty: Report

Asia and the Pacific is steadily recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, but the increased cost-of-living crisis is undermining progress toward eliminating poverty, the report stated

Pandemic, Inflation Push 68 Million More In Asia Into Extreme Poverty: Report
Developing Asia consists of 46 economies in the Asia-Pacific and excludes Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

Manila: The coronavirus pandemic and rise in cost of living have pushed close to 70 million more people in developing Asia into extreme poverty as of last year, the Asian Development Bank said, eroding efforts to combat deprivation. In a new report released on Thursday (August 24), the ADB said an estimated 155.2 million people in developing Asia, or 3.9 per cent of the region’s population, lived in extreme poverty as of last year, 67.8 million more than would have been the case without the health and cost-of-living crises.

Also Read: WHO Designates Covid’s BA.2.86 As ‘Variant Under Monitoring’

Developing Asia consists of 46 economies in the Asia-Pacific and excludes Japan, Australia and New Zealand. ADB Chief Economist Albert Park, said,

Asia and the Pacific is steadily recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, but the increased cost-of-living crisis is undermining progress toward eliminating poverty.

Extreme poverty is defined as living on less than $2.15 a day, based on 2017 figures.

Inflation in most countries has soared to multi-year highs last year, driven by a rebound in economic activity and a surge in supply chain disruptions.

Price increases affected everyone but poorer people were hit the hardest because they had to spend more on food and fuel, making it difficult for them to save money and pay for essentials including health care and education. Mr Park said,

By strengthening social safety nets for the poor and fostering investment and innovation that creates opportunities for growth and employment, governments in the region can get back on track.

Developing Asia was on track to grow 4.8 per cent this year from a year earlier, faster than the previous year’s 4.2 per cent expansion, the ADB said in July.

But while economies in developing Asia were expected to make progress in addressing poverty, the ADB said 30.3 per cent of the region’s population, or about 1.26 billion people, will still be considered economically vulnerable by 2030.

Also Read: “We Are Tracking Several COVID-19 Variants, Including EG.5,” Says WHO Director Dr Tedros

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – theLGBTQ population,indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the currentCOVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water,SanitationandHygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fightmalnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health,adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues likeair pollution,waste management,plastic ban,manual scavengingand sanitation workers andmenstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India wheretoilets are used andopen defecation free (ODF)status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched byPrime Minister Narendra Modiin 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.

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