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I N C O M E

D I S T R I B U T I O N ,

I N E Q U A L I T Y ,

A N D

T H O S E

L E F T

B E H I N D

Figure 3.4 By 2030, East and South Asia are likely to move up the global income distribution ladder, while other regions will lag Population of each region by deciles of global income distribution Percent 100 80 60 40 20 0 2000

2030

Sub-Saharan Africa

2000

2030

South Asia

2000

2030

2000

2030

Middle East and Latin America North Africa and the Caribbean

Deciles of global income distribution:

Low (1–3)

2000

2030

Europe and Central Asia Medium (4–7)

2000

2030

East Asia and the Pacific

2000

2030

High-income countries

High (8–10)

Source: Authors’ calculations.

living is also conditional on growing at least as fast as the global average. The relative stagnation in Africa and Latin America is not limited to the poorest 10 percent of the world. Virtually all Africans are at risk of underperforming their counterparts from other regions. For example, in 2000, 59 percent of the population of Sub-Saharan Africa and 25 percent of the population of East Asia were in the bottom third of the world income distribution (figure 3.4). By 2030, more than three-quarters of the population of Sub-Saharan Africa is likely to be among the world’s poorest, while only 16 percent of East Asia’s residents will remain in the bottom third. This contrasting performance is largely a function of the difference in per capita income growth rates. South Asia will continue to be the largest group in the three bottom deciles in 2030 owing to the very high initial poverty rates. But its citizens are moving up through the ranks of the global distribution at a fast pace owing to high per capita growth and, unlike in the initial situation,

most of South Asia’s poor will earn incomes in the second and third deciles in 2030. The growth effect is exactly the opposite in SubSaharan Africa, where an average African is 30 percent more likely to be in the three bottom deciles in 2030 than in 2000. Moving away from geographic regions, it is possible to identify alternative typologies of countries whose citizens could fail to improve or even lose their position in the world income distribution. One group includes low- and middle-income energy exporters, defined as countries whose exports of oil or natural gas exceed 20 percent of their total value of exports.21 In 2000 citizens of energy-exporting countries made up 15 percent of the first (bottom) decile of the global income distribution. By 2030, the population share of energy exporters in the poorest decile could rise to 27 percent. Similarly, agricultural exporters may fall behind by 2030.22 While in 2000 their citizens accounted for just one-tenth of the poorest global decile, that share could rise to 23 percent in 30 years. Although everyone

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Global Economic Prospects 2007  

Managing the Next Wave of Globalization

Global Economic Prospects 2007  

Managing the Next Wave of Globalization

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