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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

This paper highlights that the distribution of income and wealth in developing countries has become a matter of great concern to all those interested in development. The paper highlights that in Latin America, the poorest half of the population receives about the same share of income as the top 1 percent and the lowest 70–75 percent of the population the same share as the top 5 percent. It is clear that the distribution of income and wealth will have substantial implications for the pattern of consumption and production in developing countries.

Jeremy warford and Zeinab Partow

For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.

Ian S. McDonald

This paper describes the need to broaden the agenda for poverty reduction. The broadening of the agenda follows from a growing understanding that poverty is more than low income, a lack of education, and poor health. The poor are frequently powerless to influence the social and economic factors that determine their well being. The paper highlights that a broader definition of poverty requires a broader set of actions to fight it and increases the challenge of measuring poverty and comparing achievement across countries and over time.

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

The number of Malian refugees in Burkina Faso has increased, but the government’s contribution remains in line with earlier estimates. Growth for 2012 has been revised upward to 8 percent. The overall fiscal deficit is significantly lower than anticipated. The current account is expected to improve next year. There is significant improvement in revenue collection. The authorities are stepping up efforts to improve resilience to shocks. Efforts are under way to improve debt management capacity. The mining taxation regime needs to rebalance the interests of investors.