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World Bank says coronavirus pandemic will push 119-124 million into poverty

This will be the first significant rise in poverty in 20 years, the World Bank has said.

January 24, 2021 / 11:04 AM IST

The World Bank estimates that the COVID-19 pandemic will push between 119 and 124 million people across the globe into extreme poverty, higher than its previous forecast.

"In October 2020, using the June vintage of growth forecasts from the Global Economic Prospects, we estimated that between 88 and 115 million people around the globe would be pushed into extreme poverty in 2020. Using the January 2021 forecasts from GEP, we now expect the COVID-19-induced new poor in 2020 to rise to between 119 and 124 million," the World Bank said on January 11.

The increase in global poverty in 2020 was truly unprecedented, the World Bank said.

The number of new poor due to the COVID-19 outbreak is calculated as the difference between poverty projected with the pandemic and poverty projected without the pandemic.

The international organisation said the pandemic will cause a setback to success made in reducing poverty over the past 20 years. It also said poverty is said to rise significantly for the first time in 20 years.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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"In the two-decades since 1999, the number of people living in extreme poverty worldwide has fallen by more than 1 billion people. Part of this success in reducing poverty is set to be reversed due to the COVID-19 pandemic," the World Bank added.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Jan 24, 2021 11:04 am

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