How Do We Determine a Regional Poverty Rate, Southeast Asia for Example?

Many complicated metrics go into determining a poverty rate. Southeast Asia consistently comes in second as a region with the highest percentage of poverty at 15.2%.1 Sub-Saharan Africa ranks at the top with 40%.2 Several international organizations measure and rank the different regions, such as the World Bank, United Nations, UNICEF and Our World in Data, among others.

One tool to help determine poverty rate is World Bank’s PovcalNet tool, which allows organizations and individuals to extract data in different formats with different indicators to measure things surrounding poverty. World Bank states,

“PovcalNet was developed for the sole purpose of public replication of the World Bank’s poverty measures for its widely used international poverty lines, including $1.90 a day and $3.20 a day in 2011 PPP.”

PPP stands for Purchasing Power Parity, which is how much disposable income a household has. The World Bank has established $1.90 or less per day as the benchmark for extreme poverty and $3.20 per day as the next level of poverty.3

The data collected comes from information given by countries on their economies, populations, household incomes and similar metrics. It’s a complicated system involving large amounts of data from countries with different currencies and ways of colleting data. Overall, though, there is more than sufficient information to aggregate the data.

The important thing to note is that both South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa have not only held the top two highest percentages of poverty rates but have seen a reversal of any improvement due to the COVID-19 pandemic.4 Now is the time to invest in these regions where the most disadvantaged are more vulnerable than ever.

One way to do this through GFA World is child sponsorship. At just $35 a month, child sponsorship will keep a child, and their family, from sliding further from a future of hope. GFA World provides community-wide solutions such as nutritious food, school assistance, clean water and basic healthcare.

The statistics may be headed in the wrong direction, but with a unified effort of loving care from Christians worldwide, GFA World can be the outstretched arm of hope for a better tomorrow.

Learn more about poverty in Asia

1 R. Andres Castaneda Aguilar et al. “March 2021 global poverty update from the World Bank.” World Bank. March 16, 2021.
2 R. Andres Castaneda Aguilar et al. “March 2021 global poverty update form the World Bank.” World Bank. March 16, 2021.
3 “PovcalNet: An Online Analysis Tool for Global Poverty Monitoring.” The World Bank. Accessed February 4, 2022.
4 “150 Million Additional Children Plunged into Poverty due to COVID-19, UNICEF, Save the Children Say.” UNICEF. September 16, 2020.