Afghanistan: president calls the country’s poverty rate ‘shameful’

KABUL (TCA) — Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani on May 7 described the country’s current poverty rate as shameful, saying when poverty rises above 50 percent, it threatens the social stability of a country, TOLOnews reported.

“When poverty rises above 50 percent, how can society attain stability, poverty is the enemy of stability,” said Ghani.

This comes a day after a joint survey carried out by the Central Statistics Organization (CSO) and ICON International showed that almost 54 percent of the population in Afghanistan lives below the poverty line.

The survey, titled ‘The living conditions in Afghanistan’, indicates that more than 16 million people in Afghanistan, which constitutes half of the population, live below the poverty line.

The survey was carried out two years ago and the percentage of those living below the poverty line is now likely to be higher.

Based on the survey, the number of people who cannot afford their basic needs is around 15 percent while the unemployment rate is recorded at around 24 percent.

Although the survey has not pointed out the poverty rate for 2016, previously the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in a report predicted that Afghanistan’s economic growth had not gone well in 2017 due to insecurity and less investments.

A new report released by the ADB in April about the economic situation in Asia shows that the organization is not optimistic about economic growth in Afghanistan for the next few years.

The report stated that Afghanistan’s economy will only grow by 2.5 percent in 2018 and 2019 due to challenging security and political situations in the country.

Sergey Kwan

Sergey Kwan

Sergey Kwan has worked for The Times of Central Asia as a journalist, translator and editor since its foundation in March 1999. Prior to this, from 1996-1997, he worked as a translator at The Kyrgyzstan Chronicle, and from 1997-1999, as a translator at The Central Asian Post.
Kwan studied at the Bishkek Polytechnic Institute from 1990-1994, before completing his training in print journalism in Denmark.

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