Nigeria overtakes India in extreme poverty ranking

Story highlights

  • Nearly 87 million Nigerians living in extreme poverty
  • The Democratic Republic of Congo comes second

Lagos, Nigeria (CNN)Nigeria has overtaken India as the country with the largest number of people living in extreme poverty, with an estimated 87 million Nigerians, or around half of the country's population, thought to be living on less than $1.90 a day.

The findings, based on a projection by the World Poverty Clock and compiled by Brookings Institute, show that more than 643 million people across the world live in extreme poverty, with Africans accounting for about two-thirds of the total number.
In Nigeria, as with other countries on the continent, that figure is projected to rise. "By the end of 2018 in Africa as a whole, there will probably be about 3.2 million more people living in extreme poverty than there are today," the researchers write.
    Despite being the largest oil producer in Africa, Nigeria has struggled to translate its resource wealth into rising living standards.
    A slump in oil prices and a sharp fall in oil production saw the country's economy slide into recession in 2016.
    A recent rise in oil prices has helped to spur the country's economic recovery. Addressing the situation in March this year, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said that although growth was again beginning to rise, "more needs to be done to reduce unemployment and address poverty."
    But while the numbers of Nigerians falling into extreme poverty grows by roughly six people every minute, poverty in India continues to decrease.
    At present, an estimated 5.3% of Indians or 71.5 million people, live below the poverty line.

    Confined to Africa

    The researchers note that 14 out of 18 countries where poverty is rising are in Africa, adding that if current rates persist, 90% of the world's poorest will be living on the continent by 2030.
    Banglade