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Over 900 mn people face danger of being poor again: IMF Study

Millennium development goals of halving portion of people under extreme poverty by 2015 from 1990 levels are on track

Indivjal Dhasmana  |  New Delhi 

An International Monetary Fund (IMF) study has cautioned that over 900 million people remain vulnerable and could be thrown back into in the face of adverse economic shock.

Quoting UN, World and Prospects, 2013, the study on Jobs and Growth, however, said the millennium development goals of halving the portion of the people under extreme (less than $1) by 2015 from 1990 levels are on track.

As over 200 million people in the world are unemployed, the study, authored by staff team and supervised by Deputy Director, Asia and Pacific Department, Kalpana Kochhar among others, has suggested to developing countries to continue structural transformation and do a catching up with other nations.

"For developing countries, the need is to continue to enable structural transformation and catch up while addressing challenges ranging from employing large numbers of young people entering the labor force to upgrading skills and innovation to avoid the middle income trap," it said.

For developed world, it prescribed finding new sources of growth as outsourcing of both manufacturing and services sector jobs has reduced demand for lower skilled workers back home.

"For advanced countries, it has meant reduced demand for lower skilled workers in part because of outsourcing of both manufacturing and service sector jobs, and growth models in some of these countries relied," it said.

The challenge for these countries is to find new sources of growth, as earlier models proved unsustainable.

The main finding of the study is that there is no single “silver bullet” strategy for any country nor “any one size fits all” approach for all countries.

The study discusses the role the Fund can play in helping countries devise strategies to meet these challenges by reviewing the theoretical and empirical state of the art in relevant policy research so as to provide the best “evidence based” advice.

It said and technological change, along with the doubling of the global work force as China, India and the transition and the transition economies opened up in the 1980s and 1990s have undoubtedly helped raise overall global growth and welfare, but also posed many challenges.

The study said globally rate remains at 60% in 2012, the lowest levels in two decades.

Quoting International Institute for Labour Studies, World of Work, 2012, it said unemployment is stated to remain at elevated for several years.

First Published: Fri, April 05 2013. 18:04 IST