World Bank Group

The near future of global poverty

SDG 1 aims to end poverty, in all its forms, everywhere. Globally, poverty has been in decline, but even before this year, the pace of that decline had slowed. The economic effects of COVID-19 may have pushed more than 100 million more people into extreme poverty—the first significant increase in this measure in decades. At its broadest, poverty reflects an individual’s inability to achieve a particular level of welfare, in terms that may include food, clothing, transportation, public services, health, wealth, or even recreation. The discussion here focuses on poverty in a narrower sense: income or consumption in monetary terms.