Colombia’s poverty reduction plan “merits a cautious welcome” as it recognizes inequality as a problem, but also introduces a way to measure poverty that instantly reduces the poverty rate without taking action, English newspaper the Guardian said Tuesday.
According columnist Jonathan Glennie, Colombia is 25th on the list of the most income-poor people in the world. World Bank figures show that more than 12 million Colombians live of less than $2 a day and seven million Colombians fall in the extremely poor category because they live on less than $1.25 a day.
64% of the population fall below the poverty line set by the Colombian government itself.
According to The Guardian, the country has fallen behind by its Latin American neighbors. While the Colombian economy has seen rapid growth, its Gini rating — which measures income inequality — has gone up in contrast to the rest of the continent where the ratings have gone down. Colombia is now the country with the highest income inequality rate in the continent.
The Guardian applauds Colombia for recognizing, “for the first time,” inequality as a problem that must be tackled, but warns that the government’s new ways of measuring poverty automatically lowers the poverty level from 64% to 9% without implementing poverty reduction policies.