According to the results of the “2013 Social Panorama of Latin America,” released yesterday by the United Nations Economic Commission on Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Venezuela is the country in the region that achieved the greatest reduction in poverty in 2012.
The data shows that Venezuela lowered its poverty rate by 5.6 percentage points, from 29.5% down to 23.9%.
The second fastest drop in poverty was seen in Ecuador, which reduced the poverty rate from 35.3% to 32.2%. Meanwhile, Brazil reduced poverty from 20.9% 18.6%.
Poverty levels dropped as well in Peru (from 27.8% to 25.8%), Argentina (5.7% to 4.3%) and Colombia (34.2% to 32.9%).
The poverty rate remained stable in Costa Rica (17.8%), El Salvador (45.3%), Uruguay (5.9%), and the Dominican Republic (41.2%). Meanwhile, poverty increased in Mexico from 36.3% to 37.1%.
The executive secretary of ECLAC, Alicia Bárcenas, cited the government of Venezuela, Bolivia and Peru as the best examples in the political effort to reduce the poverty rate in the region.
Poverty in Latin America
ECLAC’s “2013 Social Panorama” reports that there are 164 million people living in poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean as of the close of this year, equivalent to 27.9% of the population, figures that are very similar to those found last year, indicating slower progress.
The organization estimates that progress on reducing poverty and indigents will indeed proceed at a slower pace with compared to last decade.
These results are related to the economic slowdown in the region and the increase in food prices.
“Since 2002, poverty in Latin America has fallen by 15.7 percentage points, and indigence has fallen eight percentage points, but the recent statistics show a deceleration,” Bárcena said upon presenting the report in Santiago, Chile, on Thursday.
In absolute terms, the poverty rate remains stable compared to 2012, when 164 million Latin Americans were determined to be impoverished, though the report does show a slight decrease of 0.3 percentage points.
Indigence, on the other hand, affected even more people in the region in 2013: 68 million people compared to 66 million in 2012, an increase of 0.2 percentage points.
Click here to read the full report by ECLAC.
YVKE Mundial / Press – Venezuelan Embassy to the US / December 6, 2013