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Pro-Poor Policies

September 18, 2002

AUTHOR: Hafiz A. Pasha

The objective of this paper is to identify pro-poor policies which while directly impacting on poverty do not have unfavourable consequences on growth and may even promote it. Section II of the paper describes the key elements of such policies. Section III analyses different types of policies in terms of their effectiveness in contributing to poverty reduction. In section IV is indicated a framework for tackling poverty at different levels. The analysis and conclusions in the paper are based, first, on the author’s research on poverty in the South Asian context, especially in his country, Pakistan. A comprehensive programme for tackling poverty has been articulated in his recent book, Towards Poverty Reduction, published by the Oxford University Press. Second, insights on the feasibility and effectiveness of pro-poor policies have been gained by the author in his role of policy maker in different governments of Pakistan as the federal minister for finance, planning, commerce and education respectively in three governments. Third, the author has had an opportunity to study a large sample of countries in his capacity more recently as the Director of the Regional Bureau of Asia and Pacific of the United Nations Development Program. Given this experience, most of the examples presented in the paper are from the Asia and Pacific Region.

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