Sally Mao / Staff reporter

Why the epidemic causes global poverty?

Since the onset of the epidemic, the number of poor people in the world has increased, and even some countries with poor economies have made it worse. Because of the previous epidemic, many people were infected and died, the countries and societies lost a lot of labour. During the epidemic, many companies could not pay their employees’ wages because the employers didn’t have enough business income, so employers laid off many employees and many workers lost their jobs and fixed income, which led to a large area of poverty; Economic situation, because of the epidemic, people can’t travel to any country as they used to, and it is dangerous to eat out. During the epidemic, people are isolated, the service industry and aviation industry must have human contact factors. The biggest harm to the economy is the government’s constant blockade and isolation of people, and it is necessary to give money to the infected people for assistance.

PocvalNet Graph depicting the impact of COVID on global poverty rates.

According to a Guardian article titled “People who need help during the epidemic,” during the Covid-19 pandemic, about 120 million people will fall into extreme poverty in 2020, and this number will rise to about 150 million by 2021. Nearly 250 million jobs have been lost worldwide, more than 1 billion children have been out of school, and girls are much less likely to return to the school. These children not only miss their studies; They will be less likely to find jobs and realize their potential. To stop the destruction of life and livelihood, the international community must act quickly and speed up its support to countries so that they can recover sustainably and ensure a bright future for their people. COVID-19 presents unprecedented obstacles to poverty eradication, middle-income growth and shared prosperity.

Which countries fall into extreme poverty?

“The pandemic and global recession may cause over 1.4% of the world’s population to fall into extreme poverty,” said World Bank Group President David Malpas’s. In order to reverse this serious setback to development progress and poverty reduction, countries will need to prepare for a different economy post-COVID, by allowing capital, labour, skills, and innovation to move into new businesses and sectors. World Bank Group support—across IBRD, IDA, IFC and MIGA—will help developing countries resume growth and respond to the health, social, and economic impacts of COVID-19 as they work toward a sustainable and inclusive recovery.”

According to the World Bank article titled “COVID-19 to Add as Many as 150 Million Extreme Poor by 2021,” along the lines of in Africa, during the epidemic, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa announced that more than 300,000 people were killed by the epidemic, and nearly 27 million people fell into extreme poverty. 56% of the urban population in Africa was concentrated in slums or informal houses, and only 34% of African families had basic hand-washing facilities. The epidemic caused millions of people to lose their jobs, and the economic growth rate in Africa dropped from 3.2% to at least 1.8%.

Neighbours wearing masks to curb the spread of the new coronavirus enjoyed a free meal in the Villa Maria del Triunfo district of Lima, Peru, waiting in line. The food was donated by a wealthy family and distributed to impoverished areas in the capital.

According to the World Bank Blogs article titled “The impact of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) on global poverty: Why Sub-Saharan Africa might be the region hardest hit,” it said “at the country-level, the three countries with the largest change in the number of poor are estimated to be India (12 million), Nigeria (5 million) and the Democratic Republic of Congo (2 million). A big caveat to the India number is that the latest poverty estimates we have from there are from 2011-12. This makes it very difficult to get an accurate picture of poverty in India before the pandemic took off, let alone a picture of poverty today.”

The growth of the poor population is inseparable from the connection between society and mankind. The development and problems of society make mankind need to face some economic and life difficulties, which brings them many problems.

Will the countries trapped in extreme poverty be saved?

Poverty in Africa during the epidemic, pedestrians wear masks and are busy with life.

“Rather than set up expensive ad hoc aid programmers, the latest thinking in development economics is (to quote the title of a classic book): Just Give Money to the Poor. The poor know their own needs better than aid workers do. Unlike after the global financial crisis of 2008, states and NGOs can now pay directly into poor people’s bank accounts, reducing the risk of skimming. Let us not allow Covid-19 to return people to the pit for another generation.” Simon Kuper said in the Finational Times article titled “How the pandemic deepened the poverty pit?”.

Africa is regarded as one of the areas seriously damaged by COVID-19, and the Malawi government is using the prediction model developed previously to identify some areas. For these areas, quick action can help them improve the virus as much as possible, carry out many tests, contact tracking, isolation and temporary intensive care facilities with respiratory support. However, the reason for many people lives in poor areas, it becomes difficult to maintain the blockade- farmers cannot deliver food, the market is closed, and those who rely on the daily income of the informal labour market for their livelihood have run out of urgently needed drugs, and it is difficult for pregnant women to find timely transportation before giving birth. Moreover, due to the lack of indoor running water and toilets in many places, it is difficult or impossible to comply with the public service announcement of “handwashing”. Source has indicated that titled “It’s Time to Help Africa Fight the Virus.”

The African Center for Disease Control and Prevention reported that there were nearly 29,895 confirmed cases from 52 African countries, and most of the COVID-19 cases confirmed in Africa were imported from Europe and the United States instead the first case of COVID-19 detected in China.

The US National Library of Medicine article titled “Covid-19 pandemic–an African perspective” mentioned that “Due to the prevalence of malnutrition, anemia, malaria, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and poor economic discipline, the African continent has a weak health care system and a large population with low immune function, which makes it quite different from other continents that have experienced COVID-19 so far. Therefore, preventive measures are being taken globally to curb the spread of this virus; These include social isolation, isolation and quarantine, community containment, state blockade and travel restrictions. So far, these measures are helping to control and reduce the spread of COVID-19; But then it hit the global economy, thus pushing it towards recession.”

At the beginning of January this year, the CTV news reported that 400 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been obtained on the African continent through the Indian Institute of Serology. It shows that Africa has not lost hope, and Africa hopes to resume normal life in the future.

Agathe Demarais of the Economist Intelligence Unit said that the provision of vaccines will be a global defect throughout the first half of this decade.

COVID-19 will rapidly increase the number of people living in extreme poverty, and the new coronavirus continues to spread, which will hit the poverty situation even more. For poor countries, what can the society and the country make effective help and solutions? Here is the video about Expert advice and answers: Extreme poverty amid COVID-19: What can be done.