Europe 1 with AFP 07:10, September 13, 2023333 million children still live in extreme poverty worldwide, according to a report by UNICEF and the World Bank published on Thursday. The World Bank and UNICEF have called on countries to prioritize the fight against child poverty and adopt a series of measures.
The Covid-19 pandemic has greatly slowed the fight against poverty among the youngest, and 333 million children still live in extreme poverty around the world, according to a report by UNICEF and the World Bank published on Thursday.
One in six children worldwide who live on less than $2.15 a day
One in six children in the world lives on less than $2.15 a day, according to the UN agency's report, which points out that without Covid-related disruptions, an additional 30 million children could have been lifted out of poverty. "Worsening crises, due to the consequences of COVID-19, conflict, climate change and economic shocks, have stalled progress and left millions of children in extreme poverty," UNICEF Executive Director Catherine Russell said in the statement.
"A world in which 333 million children live in extreme poverty – deprived not only of their basic needs, but also of dignity, opportunity or hope – is simply intolerable," she added.
Extreme poverty affects even 40% of children in sub-Saharan Africa, the highest percentage in the world. Unlike other regions of the world, which have all seen a decline in child poverty in recent years, sub-Saharan Africa has seen it rise, driven by rapid population growth, COVID-19 and climate-related disasters.
"Ending child poverty is a political choice"
The World Bank and UNICEF have called on countries to prioritize the fight against child poverty and adopt a range of measures, including the expansion of universal child benefit programs. "We cannot let these children down now," said Luis Felipe Lopez-Calva, World Bank Director for Poverty and Equity. "Ending child poverty is a political choice," he added.
The report's findings seem to move away from the UN's ambitious goal of eradicating extreme child poverty by 2030.