Why some countries are rich and others poor?
In common language, the terms “rich” and “poor” are often used in a relative sense: A “poor” person has less income, wealth, goods, or services than a “rich” person.
Various factors make a nation rich or poor.
Out of these prime factors are the technology development resulting in economic growth, urbanization, and rising income for efficient production and use of labor-saving technology.
Also, geography, political institutions, demography, culture, and science are the other factors that play an important role in the development of a country.
So far as political institutions are concerned, low taxes, secured property rights, and favorable climate for investments result in a wonderful institution.
Productivity needs investment in technology and investment in human capital that is getting people to be better educated, better trained, and to have better knowledge.
Government support is important to the development of a nation’s economy.
If the government provides sound property rights, free markets, and the rule of law, markets will thrive and the economy will grow.
Gross domestic product (GDP) per capita is an indicator of average economic well-being within a country.
GDP is the total market value in dollars of all ultimate goods and services produced in a year.
Dividing GDP by its population gives how much income the economy produces per person (per capita) per year.
To gauge how many citizens are rich, it is necessary to understand how much they can buy.
For comparing per capita GDP across countries, GDP is to be adjusted for purchasing power parity.
It helps to take into account inflation rates and the price of the goods and services in a country.
United Nations has put blame on corrupt governments seeking more aid and debt relief, after considering the issue for many years why so many countries stay poor or become poorer.
Poverty is a political problem, not just an economic one.
In a recent poll conducted in the UK, more than half of respondents were of the view that the single most reason for poor countries is because of corrupt governments.
More and more people are drawing attention to how politics and institutions shape poverty in developing countries.
Corruption has a devastating effect on the economy of the country.
Corruption makes government officials do something for their interest that eradicates the trust in the law and the government.
Let us take an example of a government official earning a few dollars a month and a business owner making thousands of dollars per month.
It would be very easy and tempting for the businessman to hand over a few dollars to that officer to get the things done.
Bad political behavior leads to failed policies, and the persistence of social problems leads to the destruction of ecosystems.
Religion vis-à-vis Poverty
Religion and poverty seem to be strange bedfellows.
The question can be asked whether the concepts of religion and poverty belong together in the same sentence.
Poverty refers to the absence of sufficient sustenance to maintain a complete life.
Poverty functions on a horizontal level focusing on human earthly existence.
Religion transcends in a vertical trajectory of earthly and material human concerns towards that which is deemed to be spiritual.
Religious factors have a significant influence on the assumed causes of poverty.
Religions sometimes play an important role in the lives of poor people to help them understand themselves and the world around them.
We have also noticed that usually, the poorer a country is, the more religious it is.
Gallup Polls in 143 countries reveal that where average annual incomes are 2,000 USD or less, 92% of the residents have religion as an important part of their lives. Whereas this figure is only 44% for the richer countries.
It is not necessarily the religion that makes countries poor.
Rather, poverty and insecurity make people more religious.
Though religion can provide actual help and a sense of security to disadvantaged individuals, that doesn’t mean that it solves the problems associated with poverty.
More pro-poor policies call for better quality public institutions and services that prioritize the needs of poor people.
With a strong political will, there is much that can be done to improve health and education systems and in making legal systems more inclusive.