2024 Global Finance report: Sierra Leone amongst the poorest countries

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By Ishmael Dumbuya

According to the 2024 Global Finance report, Sierra Leone is one of the countries captured as poorest, ranking 12th on the list, bringing to light the monumental hardship and the dire economic situation over the past five years.

The report highlight that corrupts governments have the propensity of making a very rich nation poor and so can history of exploitative colonization, weak rule of law, war and social unrest, severe climate conditions or aggressive neighbors, adding that a nation in debt will not be able to afford good schools, and a poorly educated workforce will limit capacity.

The report went on to state that underprivileged households worldwide suffered the severest social and economic consequences of the corona pandemic. In the world’s poorest nations, Sierra Leone among them, where high levels of informal employment are so prevalent, there were no social safety nets of temporary loans to keep businesses open and workers employed.

According to a World Bank forecast, in low and middle income countries, the current generation of students could lose up to 10% of their future average annual income.

Before Covid 19, the report underscored that the fraction of the world’s population living in extreme poverty, which means on less than $1.90 a day had fallen below 10% from more than 35% in 1990. The pandemic not only halted but reversed that progress.

Since the onset of the health emergency to the end of 2022, when in response to the rising cost of living the International Poverty Line (IPL) was also revised to $2.15, the World Bank estimated that an additional 198 million people were likely to have entered the ranks of the extremely poor.

The report climaxed on the note that the worst part is that poverty is often likely to foster more poverty. In the latest edition of the World Economic Outlook report, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) explains how impoverished nations could slide further into hardship: “The growth decline implies worsening prospects or living standards and global poverty reduction. An entrenched low-growth environment, coupled with high interest rates, would threaten debt sustainability and could fuel social tension and hinder the green transition. Furthermore, expectations of weaker growth may deter investment in capital and technologies.

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