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The international poverty line is set at $2.15 per person per day using 2017 prices. This means that anyone living on less than $2.15 a day is in extreme poverty. About 701 million people globally were in this situation in 2019.

The COVID-19 pandemic dealt the biggest setback to global poverty-reduction efforts since 1990, increasing the number of people in extreme poverty by about 70 million, to 719 million people. Rising energy and food crises, caused in part by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and the effects of climate change contribute to an uneven recovery.

To better understand whether the world is on track to end extreme poverty, and how individual countries are faring, we must regularly measure progress. The World Bank works to measure and analyze poverty and share knowledge and methods for measuring poverty more accurately and frequently.

Through this work, we learn which poverty reduction strategies work, and which do not. By measuring poverty, we also help developing countries gauge program effectiveness and guide their development strategies in a rapidly changing economic environment.

Last Updated: Dec 14, 2023