What’s behind the slowing pace of poverty reduction in Tajikistan?

Oct 17 11:10 2018 Print This Article

Tajikistan achieved high rates of economic growth during the 2000s (about 8% per year, on average), which doubled GDP per capita and helped reduce poverty by almost half between 1999 and 2009. But over the following decade, the rate of poverty reduction began to slow – between 2012 and 2017, poverty fell by about 7.5 percentage points.

 

While employment and growing income levels continued to slowly drive poverty reduction, a fall in the value of remittances in 2014 began weighing on the country’s performance. Since then, the poverty rate has fallen by about just 1 percentage point per year.

 

So, despite continued growth, why has the pace of poverty reduction slowed in Tajikistan?

 

One simple answer could be that when an economy is already in the upper-middle or high-income category, growth rates tend to be moderately low, between 0-3 percent annually. The pace of poverty reduction tends to be faster when poverty rates are high to begin with, but with lower poverty levels, the pace often decelerates – which has been the case for Tajikistan.

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