Meagre gains on Botswana poverty.


Botswana's per capita income is forecast to grow to us$12,918 in 2007, according to a September 2006 assessment by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). This makes Botswana an "upper middle income country," which is the terminology used in a January 16, 2006 story distributed by the Inter Press News Service (IPS) (Rome).

The story cited conflicting opinions about the status of Botswana's consumers, and the progress toward improving living standards enough to enlarge the country's middle class.

Citing a recent [but undated] report by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), as its source the IPS said that Botswana was on track to meet United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015. These goals include cutting the country's poverty rate in half. Currently, the UNDP says Botswana's poverty rate is 47 percent, meaning that this proportion of the population lives on less than us$1 per day. The report also said that half of all households headed by a female lived on less than us$1 per day.

The IPS quoted the UNDP report as saying, "That Botswana is showing potential for long term growth that will raise standards of living." The IPS also quotes a...

To continue reading