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The Covid-19 Pandemic and the New Poor in Africa: the Straw that Broke the Camel’s Back

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  • Samba Diop

    (Alioune Diop University, Bambey, Senegal)

  • Simplice A. Asongu

    (Yaoundé, Cameroon)

Abstract

This study assesses the incidence of the Covid-19 pandemic on poverty levels in 50 African countries by employing the PovcalNet computational tool for poverty monitoring. The empirical evidence is based on: (i) Pre Covid-19 macroeconomic projections of October 2019 and revised macroeconomic projections of April 2020 and (ii) three poverty thresholds, notably, US$1.90, US$3.20, and US$5.50 per day for the extreme, middle and higher poverty lines. The following main findings are established. First, the extreme poverty line of US$1.90 per day has increased by US$0.1 per day while the middle poverty line and the higher line have increased by US0.19$ and US0.32$, respectively. Second, the poverty headcount has increased to 35.85% for the US1.90$ poverty line, 57.55% for the US3.20$ per day poverty line and 76.42% for the higher poverty line (US5.5$ per day). Third, the corresponding additional percentage points in poverty headcount ratio are: (i) an increase of 2.09% for the poverty thresholds of US1.90$ per day and US3.2$ per day, corresponding to 28, 140, 345 and 26, 418, 200 million, respectively of the new poor in absolute terms and (ii) a boost of 1.78% for the higher poverty line of US5.5$ per day, corresponding to 19, 062, 643 million of the new poor. Fourth, country-specific tendencies are also provided for more targeted policy implications.

Suggested Citation

  • Samba Diop & Simplice A. Asongu, 2020. "The Covid-19 Pandemic and the New Poor in Africa: the Straw that Broke the Camel’s Back," Research Africa Network Working Papers 20/038, Research Africa Network (RAN).
  • Handle: RePEc:abh:wpaper:20/038
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    Cited by:

    1. Adesoji O. Farayibi & Simplice A. Asongu, 2020. "The Economic Consequences of the Covid-19 Pandemic in Nigeria," Working Papers 20/042, European Xtramile Centre of African Studies (EXCAS).
    2. Samba Diop & Simplice A. Asongu, 2020. "Global health care infrastructure and Africa in times of Covid-19: insights for sustainable development and future pandemics," Working Papers 20/073, European Xtramile Centre of African Studies (EXCAS).
    3. Simplice A. Asongu & Samba Diop & Joseph Nnanna, 2020. "The Geography of the Effectiveness and Consequences of Covid-19 Measures: Global Evidence," Working Papers 20/054, European Xtramile Centre of African Studies (EXCAS).
    4. Brum, Matias & De Rosa, Mauricio, 2021. "Too little but not too late: nowcasting poverty and cash transfers’ incidence during COVID-19’s crisis," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 140(C).
    5. Isaac Khambule, 2021. "COVID-19 and the Counter-cyclical Role of the State in South Africa," Progress in Development Studies, , vol. 21(4), pages 380-396, October.
    6. Kwami Ossadzifo Wonyra & Tomgouani Lanie & Yacobou Sanoussi, 2021. "Effets Potentiels de Court‐terme de la Pandémie de la COVID‐19 sur la Pauvreté dans les Pays de l'Union Economique et Monétaire Ouest Africaine (UEMOA)," African Development Review, African Development Bank, vol. 33(S1), pages 60-74, April.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Coronavirus; pandemic; poverty; Africa; sustainable development;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H12 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Crisis Management
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General
    • O55 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Africa

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