Youth is fixing Tube in Wheel at makeshift stall on the street of Karachi, Photo by Yasir Kazmi, Karachi, Pakistan.
Urban poverty increasing mainly due to high food inflation, stagnant real incomes, rising unemployment and shrinkage of industrial base due to the rising cost of doing business and security issues triggering flight of capital and forcing many industrialists to relocate their businesses to other countries.
Poverty is not only about incomes, but also of access to quality health, education, justice, entertainment etc. He cited shrinking state sector, bad governance, corruption, low tax-base and anti-poor policies as the main culprits for the prevailing situation.
“Poverty had fallen in the Musharraf period, but began to rise again in 2007 onwards till it went down in 2009 again. As Per World Bank and by PIDE the poverty has been falling over the last decade.”
According to poverty analysis done on the basis of data obtained through the Pakistan Social Living Standard Measurement (PSLM) survey in 2010-11, overall poverty had fallen to 12.4 per cent, with urban poverty at 7.1 per cent and rural poverty at 15.1 per cent. “These figures might not be accurate, but the important thing is the trend of decline. It would seem odd that even when the economy is performing poorly, poverty would decline, or at least, not rise. Probably the biggest poverty alleviation factor is the increase and distribution of remittances.