The official poverty rate in the United States was 11.4% in 2020, according to the US Census Bureau. According to World Bank measurements, poverty in America is higher than in parts of Asia, but much lower than in much of Africa. One nation in Africa is Burundi, the poorest country in the world.
While there is no absolute method for determining poverty rates, there is one that is widely accepted.
Gross national income, or GNI, is the amount of money earned by a country’s people and businesses in a given year. It includes income earned by companies or individuals based in a given country but operating outside its borders. GNI is a useful measure for determining the overall income of a country. The measure helps to indicate which countries are the richest and the poorest in the world. (You can find the most educated countries in the world here.)
To determine the poorest country in the world, 24/7 Wall St. examined the World Bank’s GNI per capita data for 193 countries and special regions.
Almost all of the world’s poorest countries are located in Africa. The continent has long struggled with violent conflict and political instability. Professors Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson explained in an article on poverty in Africa that the continent is in economic difficulty because âproperty rights are precarious and very inefficiently organized, markets do not work well, States are weak and political systems do not provide public goods. . They added that these “dysfunctional dynamics were then reinforced by colonialism.”
Even though some of these African countries have enough natural resources, like oil and gold, to increase their incomes, much of the wealth goes to the privileged few at the top of the political system, leaving a large part of the population in. poverty. At the end of the spectrum, these are the 25 richest countries in the world.
Burundi, a landlocked country in East Africa, is by far the poorest country in the world, with a per capita GNI that is a fraction of the global figure of $ 17,535. Here are the details:
GNI per capita: $ 780
GDP 2020: $ 3.3 billion
Life expectancy: 61.6 years
Population: 11.9 million
In most of the richer countries, a large part of the gross domestic product comes from exports, generally well above the average of 29.5% for all countries. Yet Burundi’s exports represent only 5.0% of its GDP, the lowest share of any country. Over 86% of the people of Burundi live in rural areas, the second highest share among countries. Agriculture and related industries account for 28.5% of Burundi’s $ 3.3 billion GDP. Globally, agriculture accounts for only 3.5% of all economic production.
The World Bank estimates GNI per capita using the purchasing power parity method, and figures are in current international dollars. The GNI per capita figures correspond to the most recent year available for each country.
Additional data on GDP in current US dollars, population, life expectancy at birth and access to electricity are also taken from the World Bank and are for the most recent year available for each country.
We also took into account data on corruption in the public sector in 2020 from the non-profit group, international watchdog and anti-corruption Transparency International.
Click here for the poorest countries in the world