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10 November 2004



A quarter of the world’s population, 1.3 billion people, live in severe poverty...

Nearly 800 million people do not get enough food, and about 500 million people are chronically malnourished. More than a third of children are malnourished.

In industrial countries more than 100 million people live below the poverty line, more than 5 million people are homeless and 37 million are jobless.

Of the world’s 23 million people living with HIV/AIDS more than 93% live in developing countries.

More than 840 million adults are illiterate - 538 million of them are women.

Around 2 million children died as a result of armed conflict in the last decade.

In developing countries 160 million pre-school children are underweight.

1.2 billion people live without access to safe drinking water.

110 million landmines lie undetonated in 68 countries.

Today’s society has the resources to eradicate poverty...

The net wealth of the 10 richest billionaires is $ 133 billion , more than 1.5 times the total national income of the least developed countries.
The cost of eradicating poverty is 1% of global income.

Effective debt relief to the 20 poorest countries would cost $ 5.5 billion - equivalent to the cost of building EuroDisney.

Providing universal access to basic social services and transfers to alleviate income poverty would cost $ 80 billion, less than the net worth of the seven richest men in the world.

Six countries can spend $ 700 million in nine days on dog and cat food.

Today’s world spend $ 92 billion on junkfood, $ 66 billion on cosmetics and nearly $ 800 billion in 1995 for defence expenditure.

Extreme poverty can be banished from the globe by early next century...

The proportion of human kind living in poverty has fallen faster in the past 50 years than in the previous 500 years.

Since 1960 child death rates in developing countries have more than halved, malnutrition rates have declined by almost a third, the proportion of children out of primary school has fallen from more than half to less than a quarter.

Over the past three decades the population in developing countries with access to safe water almost doubled - from 36% to nearly 70%.

The extension of basic immunisation over the past two decades has saved the lives of three million children.

In 1960-93 average life expectancy increased by more than a third in developing countries.

Poverty is no longer inevitable and should thus no longer be tolerated.

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