According to the Social Panorama of Latin America 2010 report by the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) released today, poverty in Latin America has fallen in 2010 to levels not seen since 2008. This is a result of a strong economic recovery fueled by higher commodity prices. Alicia Barcena, head of ECLAC, said Latin America was once again on track to reducing poverty as it had been since 2003. That was briefly interrupted with the economic crisis that began in 2009.
The report, presented in Santiago, Chile, highlights poverty reductions in Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, and Panama of nearly 10 percent due largely to newly implemented income distribution policies in those countries. However, Argentina, Peru and Venezuela experienced even greater reductions in poverty of between 20 percent and 30 percent. Only Costa Rica had no measured improvement in reducing poverty.
In all, nearly 41 million Latin Americans will have managed to get out of poverty this year reducing the total number of Latin Americans in poverty to 180 million or 32.1 percent of the total population. Latin Americans living in extreme poverty also fell to 2008 levels of 72 million people or 12.9 percent of the population.