Peru is maintaining its target of reducing the rate of poverty to 20 percent by 2016 despite a recent slowdown in the economy, according to a high-level government official said quoted in daily Gestion.
Paola Bustamante, the minister of Social Development and Inclusion (Midis), said that the government expects to meet that target thanks to continued economic growth and investments in social programs for low-income residents.
“For this year, we will have more than 3.4 billion soles (US$1.2 billion) specifically to implement social programs in Midis, and for next year we are going to have, if Congress approves it, 3.8 billion soles,” Bustamante said.
Peru’s poverty rate has declined steadily over the past decade thanks to strong economic growth. In 2013, the poverty rate was 23.9 percent, compared to more than 50 percent 10 years earlier.
President Ollanta Humala took office in 2011 with promises to further reduce the poverty rate by maintaining economic growth and expanding social programs. The Andean country could face challenges in further reducing poverty as economic growth begins to slow.
In April, Peru’s economy expanded by only 2 percent compared to the previous month.