Can International Agreements Eradicate Poverty

In recent decades, significant progress has been made in reducing poverty. According to the most recent estimates, in 2015, 10% of the world`s population lived on or below $1.90 a day. This is a decrease of 16 per cent in 2010 and 36 per cent in 1990. This means that the end of extreme poverty is at hand. However, the decline has slowed. In April 2013, the World Bank set a new target to end extreme poverty in a generation. The new goal is to keep no more than 3% of the world`s population living on only $1.90 a day by 2030. By measuring poverty, we learn which anti-poverty strategies work and which strategies do not. Measuring poverty also helps developing countries measure the effectiveness of the programme and guide their development strategy in a rapidly changing economic environment. But effective altruism carries risks. While there may be many solutions, effective altruists focus exclusively on those whose effect is already proven.

However, there are many things that have not yet been studied or are not measurable. In particular, in the big complex problems – war, poverty, discrimination – there is no solution that exceeds all others. These are often different factors that together can lead to long-term system changes. This can never be counted in a simple impact calculation. Although progress in eliminating extreme poverty has been gradual and widespread, the persistence of poverty, including extreme poverty, remains a major problem in Africa, in least developed countries, in small island developing states, in some middle-income countries, and in countries in conflict and post-conflict. In response to these concerns, the General Assembly decided, at its 62nd session, to proclaim the third United Nations Decade for the Elimination of Poverty (2018-2027). The goal of the third decade is to maintain the momentum created by the implementation of the Second United Nations Decade for the Elimination of Poverty (2008-2017) towards the eradication of poverty. In addition, the third decade should also provide effective and coordinated support for internationally agreed development goals for poverty eradication, including the Sustainable Development Goals. Compared to the World Bank`s definition of extreme poverty – which lives at $1.90 or less per day – global poverty has decreased (although the decline is more modest if China is excluded), and income has increased among the world`s poorest. Today, extreme poverty affects only about 10% of the population in developing countries, up from about 50% 40 years ago. Margaret Thatcher called poverty « a personality error. » The world can only defeat COVID-19 by solidarity and mutual aid.