The Millennium Declaration set 2015 as the target date for achieving the eight Millennium Development Goals. These goals established quantitative benchmarks for halving extreme poverty in all its forms (see Annex II). As the date approaches, the world finds itself mired in an unprecedented economic recession. In sub-Saharan Africa and Southern Asia, both the number of poor and the poverty rate increased in some of the least-growth economies in 2009, a factor exacerbated by the growing burden of catastrophes caused by climate change and natural disasters. Current projections suggest that overall poverty rates in the developing world fell in 2009 but at a much slower pace than before the downturn (UNDESA, 2009). For some countries, this may mean the difference between reaching, or not, their poverty reduction target.

Sustainable Development Goals:
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