Few Poorest Countries in the World
Some of the poorest countries are in Africa and with good reason. Centuries of colonial exploitation, neglect, corrupt rulers and skewed Exim policies that hand over the region’s natural resources to the West for negligible returns are some of the reasons. The following have been identified by a prestigious publication as the bottom of the ladder in the world:
A landlocked African country on the south-eastern edge of the continent, Malawi has well over 85% of the country’s population of 16 million rural people living and surviving on subsistence farming. The country’s economy is teetering on the verge of collapse and supported only by foreign aid. The nation went into a deeper hole when the International Monetary Fund (IMF) stopped its aid disbursements to Malawi in 2000, /quoting widespread corruption and mishandling of the funds. Malawi continues to be in the throes of massive problems like the scourge of the HIV/AIDS pandemic, a rudimentary market economy, and a dysfunctional education system.
Another landlocked African country, Burundi’s overwhelming majority of the population depends on subsistence agriculture. Located in the Great Lakes region of Africa, Burundi has a history checkered with ethnic strife arising out of peculiar tribal loyalties, local militias, and military coupes. A laying over of a western democratic system has not helped and the existing problems have consistently derailed its long-term prospects for development. Well over 80% of the population lives abysmally under pathetic conditions well below the poverty line. Political unrest rocks the country time and again and the little progress is annihilated.
The Central African Republic
A landlocked African country, the economy of Central African Republic is largely dependent on the export of diamonds. Most people here live on subsistence farming while diamonds brings in between 40-55% of the country’s export revenues. But the lawlessness and black-market means that up to a half of those diamonds are sold in the black market, denying the government of tax revenue.
As most of the country is covered by the Sahara Desert, despite being the largest country in West Africa, Niger has limited economic activities. Besides being completely landlocked, the country is very resource poor. The rest of the country not covered by the desert is best by climatic cataclysms in the form of sporadic droughts. Climate change is worsening the effects of the dual threats of desertification of arable land and salinization of drinking water.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo
Decades of ethnic conflict arising out divided tribal loyalties and rogue militias have laid waste all these resources even though the DRC is one of the most resource-rich nations, sitting on priceless deposits including diamonds and other precious stones in the world. While the government desperately tries to secure a semblance of proper governance in recent years the economy remains in the doldrums.
As the only island nations in this list Madagascar’s economy is largely dependent on agriculture the chief products being rice, tea, cotton, and dairy. A long history of political strife replete with militias and coups, issues means that vast populace does not live a fixed and settled life leading to devastating effects on its economic productivity.