In addition, the gap between rich and poor is widening, both within and among countries (25). In 1960, the richest 20 percent of the world’s population controlled 70 percent of global income. By 1993, they controlled 85 percent, and the share of the poorest 20 percent had decreased from 2.3 to 1.4 percent. These disparities are likely to increase for the next half century even if real economic growth rates in most developing regions significantly outpace those in the developed regions (26). Within many countries, income is also distributed inequitably. The table below, titled The Gap Between Rich and Poor is Widening, shows how the poor compare in income with the national average income of several countries (27). The differences are striking: in Brazil, the poor earn only one tenth as much as the average person.
|The Gap Between Rich and Poor is Widening|
|Per Capita Income of the Poorest 20 Percent, 1993[a]|
|Country||Average Per Capita Income||Per Capita Income of the Poorest 20 Percent|
|Republic of Korea||9,630||3,563|
Source: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Human Development Report 1996 (UNDP, New York, 1996), p.13.
Note: a. Values are in 1993 International dollars using purchasing power parity.