The World Bank says about 15 per cent of the population of Chad is incapable of satisfying their basic nutritional needs of 2,400 kilocalories per day.
The World Bank revealed this in its 2021 poverty evaluation report.
The report revealed that poverty is omnipresent and very severe in Chad to the extent that 3.4 million women and 3.1 million men, representing 42 per cent of the Chadian population, live below the national poverty line of 242,092 FCFA (about $400) per year.
The Chadian population stricken by poverty lives mainly in rural areas where poverty levels vary from one zone to the other.
About 89 per cent of poor households are in rural areas where low-yielding agricultural activities and animal breeding are the principal means of subsistence. In comparison, only 3 per cent live in the national capital, N’Djamena.
“The highest poverty level is in the border regions with the Central African Republic, Cameroon, Sudan, and Nigeria. These zones are affected by conflict and instability in the neighbouring countries, and they welcome thousands of refugees and internally displaced persons,” the World Bank report revealed.
The Mandoul and Logone Oriental regions bordering the Central African Republic play host to 8 per cent and 9 per cent of the poor population of Chad, while Mayo-Kebi and Mayo-Kebbi West, at the border with Cameroon, host a total of 17 per cent of the poor people.
“Due to the concentration of poverty in the Sudanese rural zones, the policies conceived to reinforce the social protection system, make the youths and women self-sufficient and encourage entrepreneurship must target the southern regions of the country and reflect the unique needs of agricultural households,” the report said.
In the past several years, multiple shocks have exacerbated poverty at the regional level.
The drop in the international cotton prices has seriously affected the revenue of households in the cotton zones such as Tandjile, Logone and Sila, bringing about augmentation in the level of poverty which can be up to 60 per cent in Tandjile.
To combat this unfortunate situation, the World Bank suggests ameliorating access to employment to raise the standard of living of Chadians.
“The amelioration of access to electricity and potable water would contribute to reducing poverty, even if it is at a low level. That is why the government must invest more in it,” the World Bank suggests.
The report notes that in Chad, poor households tend to have many children, and the heads of low-income families are primarily self-employed and less educated.
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