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Causes of Poverty in Latin America

Keywords: latin america poverty causes, effects of poverty

Poverty is having less or inability to cover the basic individuals needs. The needs include nutrition, shelter, clean drinking water, health care, clothing, education amongst others. In comparison to worldwide averages, Latin America is one of the poorest of the indegent. Most of its populace lives in definite poverty. Around 70% of the population in South America lives in cities. Research has revealed the great variant in Latin America societies. In 1970, up to 40% of all households in Latin America lived below the type of poverty. Countries like Argentine, Brazil, Colombia and Peru 62% of homeowners lived at starvation level. Poverty is more serious in the countryside especially on homes that be based upon agricultural sector.

In Latin America, poverty is a structural problem. It started in the times of colonialism when a little group was the top class who had large amounts of land (UNRISD Survey, 2010). In 1930s, the elite gained politics and economic power. They possessed great riches but were not worried about the inequitable circulation of property. This has led to a huge difference between the minorities who owns everything and the majority who owns only there labor and lives. In the 80s, Countries like Venenzuela, Chile, Panama, and Uruguay acquired large unemployment statistics. The situation got worse. Latin American countries commenced to experience political change but its cost was so high that the available sociable structures weren't in a position to support the poor. This caused economic instability hence escalating poverty levels. Large slums began to emerge the difficult mother nature of poverty is difficult to solve. Neither the government nor non-governmental organizations got solutions. The introduction of urban centers led to poverty focus. Today, there are up to 240 million people living with less than one U. S. buck per day. In rural areas, lack of food, inadequate health centers and lack of universities are the key problems. In Urban centers, unemployment and lack of regular and good paying jobs is the key predicament. Low-income jobs that last for a brief term without cultural security have made the problem worse.


The main reason behind poverty is unequal distribution of wealth. In rural areas, the peasants are among the poorest people. Other causes of poverty are inner conflicts, migration, higher fertility and structural adjustment. Colonialism also added to South America's poverty. Though South America has vast natural resources, it continues to be home to the world's poorest people. Injustice and inequality has mainly added to the gnawing poverty. Politics have also resulted surge of poverty levels. Diversion of resources from domestic needs to american marketplaces fueled by international political interest is common (Shah, 2010).

This causes lack of basic needs like drinking water, food, healthcare, education and other important interpersonal amenities. The policies of international bodies like IMF and the globe Lender has resulted to credit debt hence poverty. Latin American countries have increased their dependence on rich western nations leading to a rise in poverty. THE PLANET Loan provider and IMF to ensure economic restructuring and arrears repayment have enforced structural Adjustment Guidelines. Thus, these poor nations have reduced their costs on education, health insurance and development and centered on repaying debts. It has resulted in lower specifications of living of the individuals.

The imposition of IMF and World Bank or investment company policies has been devastating to these countries. They have continued to be dependant upon developed nations and also have become even poorer. In order to increase money to ay off debts, they must export more. Since all Latin American countries are battling to export, their resources have become cheaper in the international market, which can be an benefits to the developed countries. Governments in these poor countries have reduced consumption and are spending less. Thus, the value of labor has reduced and the workforce is earning less. This may lead to cultural unrest; if things go, incorrect investors may pull out their assets, which may cause financial collapse. Mexico and Brazil experienced this in 1998/99. Whenever the IMF helps to keep the exchange rate in their favour, poor Latin American countries stay even poorer. IMF and World Loan company prescribe that Latin American countries should allow more imports in their nations leading to dependency and poverty. Developed nations sell products for utilization and not tools of production. This makes the poor nations dependant on their products.


The effects of poverty are public and political instability, drug addiction and insecurity. Extreme poverty is becoming a hazard and can affect global economy. It creates social tensions particularly when development policies fail. Latin American countries are amidst producers of against the law drugs. Cocaine production is high in these nations. Drug trafficking has also has cultural costs to local communities and national organizations. It triggers rampant violence and corruption resulting in human rights abuse. Social deterioration rises with upsurge in countrywide poverty. Despite these problems, tries to reduce drug trade remains unsuccessful. The occurrences that have been occurring have demonstrated this evidently. Immigration of millions of individuals pushed to search for better economic potential clients is increasing (Shah, 2010). Skilled and unskilled staff migrate to vacation spots such as Spain and U. S. A. estimations show that up to seven thousand have migrated. Most of the ones migrating are women who are domestic workers and in agriculture.

Social institutions seen as obstacles to advance, they get broken down in a bet to tidy up the metropolitan areas. Taking away the homeless from the avenues is a common perception in Latin American cities. Social dislocation is also more likely to increase crime. Road offences and burglary is increasing in the go up. The main traveling force at the back these crimes is poverty. Initiatives to reduce offense have resulted in creating more prisoners instead of reducing criminal offense. Poverty has also caused a rise in drug trafficking and money laundering. It could lead to environmental degradation on global range. Miserable poor people who do not have jobs can do anything to survive. Among the activities they can certainly take part in is drug abuse. Drug dependency is so rampant in most Latin American, is a result of poverty. Poverty has also brought on environmental problems. Food source is also inadequate. An incredible number of children die each year because of insufficient health services. Approximately 26% of children five years and below were experiencing malnutrition. Not all children gain access to basic education. Illiteracy levels stay high. It is clear that after adopting structural adjustment, most Latin American countries remain in economic turmoil. Economic expansion remains unattainable.

These conditions are a risk to political stableness. In 1999, poverty levels continued to be up to 43. 8%. Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia were amongst of the least developed countries in Latin America. Though these countries have extended there export, there exists little economic expansion. Provision of Support to regulate poverty is necessary. Latin American countries can collaborate with countries like Japan to assist in solving environmental problems. Regional integration and campaign of trade important should be at the top of the list. They should improve their capacity to produce food by using natural resources effectively and effectively. Poverty in Latin America does not affect its nations only but the complete world. Thus, the federal government of these countries should collaborate with the international body in order to find lasting solutions. The only way to achieve economic development is by increasing home productivity. Which means that they need to produce more goods and reduce reliance on brought in goods. Chile for case has reached the first MDG, United nation's millennium development goal. She has reduced the proportion of individuals living under the type of poverty by 50 percent.

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