Poverty in Sri Lanka will spike this year-World Bank

Poverty in Sri Lanka will spike this year-World Bank- BPN TODAY

The World Bank has warned that more Sri Lankans will slip into poverty this year, as it urged the government to undertake urgent policy measures to address the high levels of debt, trim fiscal deficit, and mitigate the adverse impacts on the poor and vulnerable.

Sri Lanka is currently facing an unprecedented economic turmoil since independence.

The World Bank said in its Spring Update on the South Asian region, that around 11.7 per cent of people in Sri Lanka earn less than USD 3.20 per day, the international poverty line for lower-middle income countries, up from 9.2 per cent in 2019.

According to the World Bank the other reason for the increase in poverty rates in the country was because the government’s Samurdhi programme, which covers around 1.2 million poor families, remained inadequate.

It said, less than half of the poor were beneficiaries of the Samurdhi, and benefit amounts remain largely inadequate.

The World Bank also noted that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Sri Lankan economy contracted by 3.6 per cent in 2020.

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