What is poverty? This question has a number of different answers. The World Bank measures poverty according to income: A person living in extreme poverty is anyone who lives on less than USD 1.90 a day. However, malnutrition and a lack of accommodation can also be an expression of poverty. According to a different definition, a person is poor if their environment restricts their ability to achieve their potential. Often, a multi-dimensional framework is used to define poverty (source:
In recent years, considerable progress has been made in international efforts to reduce poverty. Since 1990, extreme poverty has fallen by more than two-thirds. Nevertheless, poverty remains one of today’s greatest challenges, and alleviating poverty is a key development cooperation objective.
KfW is actively committed to overcoming extreme poverty in all its forms everywhere by 2030. Based on its economic and development policy experience, its main approach is to help vulnerable population groups help themselves. In developing nations and countries in crisis, KfW and its projects contribute to the alleviation of poverty both directly (e.g. labour-intensive employment programmes, social transfers) and indirectly (e.g. through the promotion of social infrastructure). It strengthens its partners’ own responsibility and promotes the development of skills to help reduce poverty, while strictly observing human rights.
To break down the vicious circle of hardship and poverty for the long term, KfW also promotes the development of social protection systems. In these endeavours, it aims to protect the population from eventualities such as illness and climate-related risks.
In 2021, numerous KfW Development Bank projects contributed to the achievement of SDG 1. With more than EUR 1.8 billion, poverty allevation remains a strengthened main goal. In addition, various projects with a total financial volume of more than EUR 4.1 billion promote poverty reduction as an important secondary goal.