Poverty rose in East Asia for the first time in twenty years, the World Bank said on Tuesday. This is a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic, which caused a triple economic shock. The Covid-19 pushes 38 million more people into poverty.
The Washington-based international financial institution sets the poverty line at $ 5.50 a day. With the pandemic, 33 million people remained under this limit even though their situation would have improved without the health crisis. The World Bank estimates that 5 million people fell below the poverty line because of the coronavirus.
According to the World Bank, East Asia is heading towards 0.9% economic growth this year, the smallest increase since 1967. China’s gross domestic product will grow by 2% while other countries of the region will show an average increase of 3.5%.
Countries were first faced with the economic consequences of the pandemic itself and then with the consequences of the strict measures taken to stem the spread of the virus. The global recession resulting from the health crisis was a third economic shock, says the World Bank. The economies of East Asia largely depend on demand from other countries of the world. This remains low and therefore neutralizes the partial recovery.
East Asia includes China, the two Koreas and Japan in particular.