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Promises to Keep in 2016

Since the turn of the century, remarkable strides have been taken toward a world in which every person has the chance to lead a healthy, productive life. But while further progress is possible, it is not inevitable.

DAVOS – We live in extraordinary times. Each day seems to bring fresh headlines about an unfolding crisis – whether it is migration, economic volatility, security, or climate change. One factor common to all these complex and unprecedented challenges is poverty; so eliminating it will make overcoming them significantly easier.

There is good reason for optimism about progress on reducing inequity. Since the turn of the century, remarkable strides have been taken toward a world in which every person has the chance to lead a healthy, productive life. Maternal deaths have almost halved; child mortality and malaria deaths have halved; extreme poverty has more than halved. And last year, the world signed up to finish the job.

The centerpiece of the Global Goals to which the United Nations’ 193 countries agreed in September is to end poverty in all its forms everywhere by 2030. We are confident that this is not only possible, but that we will see major breakthroughs along the way, which will provide unprecedented opportunities to people in poor countries. Indeed, we think their lives will improve faster in the next 15 years than at any other time in history – and that their lives will improve more than anyone else’s.

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