EXTREME poverty is rare in the Pacific with the World Bank drawing its evidence from Fiji and other Pacific Island countries.
However, the bank reports about 20 per cent of the people in most Pacific countries live in hardship. This means they are unable to meet all of their basic needs such as food, fuel and medicines, but not as extreme as witnessed in other countries in the world.
The World Bank launched a regional report, Hardship and Vulnerability in the Pacific Island Countries, at the USP on Tuesday.
"Pacific Island countries are some of the world's most at-risk countries to economic and environmental shocks and people face a number of growing threats, from NCDs to natural disasters," said Melissa Adelman, World Bank economist and lead author of the report.
In recent years, the report stated, hardship had decreased in Fiji, but less was known about hardship over time in other countries.
"Poverty measurement was carried out in a similar fashion on the two most recent nationally representative household surveys conducted in Fiji (2002-2003 and 2008-2009)."
It stated this analysis showed that total hardship declined from about 40 per cent of the population in 2003 to 35 per cent in 2009.