Oxford University says Rwanda to “eradicate” poverty in 20 years
A major study released by Oxford University has concluded that if Rwanda keeps the current pace in tackling poverty, it will be a thing of the past by 2033. However, it will take Ethiopia 45 years.
The study covering 22 countries says Rwanda showed the biggest improvement in sanitation and water. Rwanda also achieved significant reductions in both the scale and intensity of “multidimensional poverty” in every one of its five provinces, says the report released today in London.
Dr Sabina Alkire and Dr Jose Manuel Roche from the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) carried out the study. The authors used a new research method called the Multidimensional Poverty Index, or MPI.
It measures the intensity of different deprivations that poor people face including nutrition, education and sanitation and not just income.
“Using this measure, we found that reductions in intensity – the percentage of deprivations people experience at the same time – were strongest in relatively poorer countries, such as Ethiopia, Malawi and Senegal,” said Dr Alkire.
For example, if the study’s “star” countries, Rwanda, Nepal and Bangladesh, continue to reduce poverty at the current rate, they will halve MPI in less than 10 years and eradicate it in 20 years. The other well-performing countries are Ghana, Tanzania, Cambodia and Bolivia.
Between 2007-2012, Rwanda government figures show that poverty dropped by some up to 15% – removing up to 1.2million Rwandans from poverty. The percentage of poor is currently down to 45%.
However, the study is predicting that the future for other countries does not look as positive.
“At the current rate of reduction, it will take Ethiopia 45 years to halve multidimensional poverty; in other words, to achieve poverty levels equivalent to those Nigeria has now,” said OPHI’s Dr José Manuel Roche, who calculated the predictions.
“Based on the same assumptions, it will take India 41 years and Malawi 74 years to eradicate acute poverty as measured by the MPI.”