Bill Gates predicts there will be very few poor countries by 2035

By on January 22, 2014, 7:15 AM

Microsoft co-founder turned philanthropist Bill Gates believes that by 2035, there will be almost no poor countries left in the world. By learning from their most productive neighbors and benefiting from innovations like new vaccines, better seeds and the digital revolution, nearly all countries will be what we now refer to as lower-middle income or richer according to an annual letter released by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The letter also tries to dispel what he says are three common myths about global poverty: poor countries are doomed to stay poor, foreign aid is a big waste and saving lives leads to overpopulation. Gates said they hear these myths raised at international conferences, at social gatherings and they even get asked about them by politicians, reporters, students and CEOs.

The World Bank defines poor as any country with a gross national income per capita of $1,035 or less per year in 2012 dollars. At present, 36 countries fall into this category but the good news is that it wouldn’t take too much additional income for some to rise above poverty.

For example, the income level per capita in the Kyrgyz Republic would only need to increase by five percent over the next 20 years to be considered a middle-income nation. Other regions, like the Democratic Republic of the Congo, would need to increase income by a factor of five to reach the same level, however.

While the forecast may seem lofty, Gates is a realist and knows that not all nations will make it by 2035. Some, he said, will be held back by war, politics or geography while inequality will still remain an issue for others.




User Comments: 43

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VitalyT VitalyT said:

He may have a big bank account, but that's as far as it goes. His ability to predict future have always been laughable, same as this one.

gamoniac said:

It is definitely good to see someone ultra-rich giving away 90% his fortune to help others instead of seeking the next billion dollars. You did good, Bill.

Alfonso Bergamo Alfonso Bergamo said:

This guy should stick to computers

1 person liked this | misor misor said:

I predict that the u.s.a. will become a poor nation by 2035.

with its penchant for unnecessary wars it cannot sustain financially, the u.s.a. will fall.

The letter also tries to dispel what he says are three common myths about global poverty: poor countries are doomed to stay poor, foreign aid is a big waste and saving lives leads to overpopulation.

India, China, Indonesia, and the Philippines = overpopulation = opportunity due to available skilled workers (?)

MilwaukeeMike said:

I predict that the u.s.a. will become a poor nation by 2035.

with its penchant for unnecessary unfunded entitlements that it cannot sustain financially, the u.s.a. will fall.

Fixed your quote for you

2 people like this | MilwaukeeMike said:

This guy should stick to computers

He may have a big bank account, but that's as far as it goes. His ability to predict future have always been laughable, same as this one.

He's not doing computers anymore, he's full time saving lives through vaccinations, sanitation and a bunch of other things. His predictions are pretty reasonable, and it's not like he's just blindly saying this stuff. He's working towards it every day. He's most likely just projecting forward the progress they're making right now, not making wild guesses.

I think you guys don't like Bill because you don't like MS, but he doesn't work there anymore. He took his fortune and started a foundation and now he's doing as much to help rid the world of poverty as any other single person alive.

Fbarnett Fbarnett said:

This guy should stick to computers

He may have a big bank account, but that's as far as it goes. His ability to predict future have always been laughable, same as this one.

He's not doing computers anymore, he's full time saving lives through vaccinations, sanitation and a bunch of other things. His predictions are pretty reasonable, and it's not like he's just blindly saying this stuff. He's working towards it every day. He's most likely just projecting forward the progress they're making right now, not making wild guesses.

I think you guys don't like Bill because you don't like MS, but he doesn't work there anymore. He took his fortune and started a foundation and now he's doing as much to help rid the world of poverty as any other single person alive.

Right I like all the hate about Bill Gates and Microsoft. He s kicking a$$ or at least trying which is more than we can say about the people who's jobs its is. And without Microsoft pc's would not be here today. Then again there is that camp of 50 world wide people who bash Microsoft that use Linux

kepler kepler said:

No one can predict future except god, these just statistic.

Gaara Gaara said:

Bill Gates predicts there will be very few poor countries by 2035? who he think its GOD? to predict. Normal behavior

JWRLive said:

Bill Gates is right and its not really a prediction.

Most of it is happening now.

I used to think that many countries had out of control populations, that caused their poverty and nothing could be done to solve the problem.

Totally wrong!

If you think in terms of population replacement.. then a woman would have around 2 children in her lifetime.

I think it would surprise most people what the current rates around the world are.

China has a lower replacement rate the the US. India, Indonesia and the Philippines aren't that much higher than the US.

Go visit the official CIA Website and see what the current rates around the World are.

Almost all of the countries with high population replacement are in Africa.

Fix the education, economy and health in Africa and their population will slow down too.

Raoul Duke Raoul Duke said:

And without Microsoft pc's would not be here today.

You require a history lesson, look up a little company called IBM

TS-56336 TS-56336 said:

It is 2014 and our country's even impoverished due to corruption. .

Guest said:

What he doesn't tell you is that the U.S. will be one of them. :)

technogiant said:

I predict that the u.s.a. will become a poor nation by 2035.

with its penchant for unnecessary unfunded entitlements that it cannot sustain financially, the u.s.a. will fall.

Fixed your quote for you

Firstly its easy to be philanthropic when it doesn't actually affect your living standards.

Secondly about the wars? is that the correct word? or should it be stabilization and nation building?....well what ever you call it I don't think the USA should do what they are doing now....it is just too expensive and long term and when they pull out after doing what they can these societies just fall back into chaos....No in such situations I believe the rod to be more effective than the carrot.

Guest said:

Fix the education, economy and health in Africa and their population will slow down too.

This is true, there have been various studies showing that developing countries have high birth rates that decrease as the nation becomes developed.

MilwaukeeMike said:

Firstly its easy to be philanthropic when it doesn't actually affect your living standards.

Secondly about the wars? is that the correct word? or should it be stabilization and nation building?....well what ever you call it I don't think the USA should do what they are doing now....it is just too expensive and long term and when they pull out after doing what they can these societies just fall back into chaos....No in such situations I believe the rod to be more effective than the carrot.

I didn't change it because it wasn't real, I changed it because it's not what would make the USA poor. According to nationalpriorities.org the cost of the war in Afghanistan as been $660 billion since 2001, and was $91.5 billion in 2013. I believe that those costs will go down in the coming years.

Compare that to the projected costs of medicare, social security, and medicaid. They're projected to be around $90 Trillion (according to the wall street journal [link] )

Since you're a fan of analogies... if we're talking about what's going to bankrupt the US, we should worry about the steak and not the peas.

EClyde EClyde said:

What a dopey dope

EClyde EClyde said:

Fix the education, economy and health in Africa and their population will slow down too.

Tell them to do it. They have had plenty of time, my money and opportunity. I don't care

1 person liked this | howzz1854 said:

I love the guy. and his generosity in various charities. but did he just try to convince the public that the world will have no poor after research last week showed that 85 richest in the world owned half of world's population's wealth?

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

You require a history lesson, look up a little company called IBM

Depends what context you're looking at. If you define "PC" by x86, then yes. If you define "pc" as "personal computer/computing" then there are a host of 8-bit based systems that pre-date IBM's involvement.

VitalyT VitalyT said:

I think you guys don't like Bill because you don't like MS, but he doesn't work there anymore

My post was precisely on the basis as I explained - short-sighted predictions Bill Gates made in the past for the IT industry. No need to make stuff up that's not there.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

Fix the education, economy and health in Africa and their population will slow down too.

Not until they first fix their primitive cultures and attitudes which are the real obstacles to progress.

tonylukac said:

I really think the us will become poor as these countries become rich. And who buys all their products? Not them. The us buys all their gizmos. If I were ceo of apple, I'd make everything in the us or robotize it. And with apple's profit margin, they could afford to. Time to forget investments and get with the payroll. Only a select few (90 people have half the worlds wealth?) make it with investments.

Guest said:

Then again there is that camp of 50 world wide people who bash Microsoft that use Linux

Those Linux users who bash Microsoft are miserable ****** who are just jealous that Windows is a successful platform.

Raoul Duke Raoul Duke said:

When eliminating poor countries means that your citizens have a gross national income per capita of over $1,035 per year I'm don't think "not poor" is a very well chosen descriptor.

Gaara Gaara said:

Those Linux users who bash Microsoft are miserable *****s who are just jealous that Windows is a successful platform.

I disagree with you on that, Linux system just start it and look how good they are.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I hope you are not insinuating that Linux is newly developed. I personally know Linux has been around for a good portion of Windows lifespan.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

I predict that the u.s.a. will become a poor nation by 2035.

with its penchant for unnecessary wars it cannot sustain financially, the u.s.a. will fall.....[ ].......

Nah, we'll just raise the national debt ceiling, then print some more money...:p

Hasbean said:

I very much doubt there will be no countries that will be very poor. In fact there will likely be more due to the PNAC requirement of on-going wars and proxy wars, amerikkkan imperial expansion and the privately owned Federal Reserve and the privately owned International Monetary Fund supplying fiat money for exorbitant rates.

davislane1 davislane1 said:

I'm disappointed that there's not a single graph or pie chart in this discussion thread. How can anyone squawk about gov't finances and economic policy without a graphic war?

As for Mr. Gates... As much as I respect his generosity and optimism, nobody can accurately predict things that far out. It's hard enough to predict the immediate future in matters with far fewer variables. Keep up the good work, but leave the long-term forecasts & predictions for sales people.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

I very much doubt there will be no countries that will be very poor. In fact there will likely be more due to the PNAC requirement of on-going wars and proxy wars, amerikkkan imperial expansion and the privately owned Federal Reserve and the privately owned International Monetary Fund supplying fiat money for exorbitant rates.
It's always the "Amerikkkans", isn't it? We provide a convenient excuse for the third world's failures.

Why don't you go join a group of Somali pirates? That would be a more active approach, in lieu of whining online at Techspot.

Besides, you can't be that poor, you have internet don't you? Although, I would be in favor of your mom and dad setting the parental controls up a couple of notches.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

As for Mr. Gates... As much as I respect his generosity and optimism, nobody can accurately predict things that far out.
He damn sure couldn't do it 20 years ago, why should we believe he can do it now? lol

1 person liked this | davislane1 davislane1 said:

He damn sure couldn't do it 20 years ago, why should we believe he can do it now? lol

Alright. I set myself up for that one.

Stated again, less sloppily: Long-term predictions are statistically unreliable. Thus, I don't put much stock into them. A past track record only create the illusion of a crystal ball.

Hasbean said:

It's always the "Amerikkkans", isn't it? We provide a convenient excuse for the third world's failures.

Why don't you go join a group of Somali pirates? That would be a more active approach, in lieu of whining online at Techspot.

Besides, you can't be that poor, you have internet don't you? Although, I would be in favor of your mom and dad setting the parental controls up a couple of notches.

Aside from your personal swipes, my comments on PNAC, amerikkan policy, the Federal Reserve and IMF warrant your further investigations, none of these are directly attributable to the American people, but very much the domain of amerikkkan politicians, their handlers and their sponsors. You would do well to further research who, what and for whom the US government operates, because from my perspective it does not seem to be for the American people that it supposedly represents.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

Aside from your personal swipes, my comments on PNAC, amerikkan policy, the Federal Reserve and IMF warrant your further investigations, none of these are directly attributable to the American people, but very much the domain of amerikkkan politicians, their handlers and their sponsors. You would do well to further research who, what and for whom the US government operates, because from my perspective it does not seem to be for the American people that it supposedly represents.
Perhaps not. But when you come right down to it, throughout the entire course of history, no government has ever really had the commoner's interests at heart.

You could say the same for every crap hole oil sheik, every petty despot such as Saddam Hussein, or Muammar Gaddafi, right down to every lazy BS artist shaman who ever bilked a tribe's people out of their possessions, claiming to have salvation or nonexistent cures for disease.

Like I said, it's easy for some pseudo intellectual malcontent such as yourself, to blame all the world's problems on the USA. And while you're at it, spare me your half a** attempts at clever spellings of my country's name.

A FWIW, the music I listen to, for decades has included social consciousness, high minded moral lectures, and anti government sentiment. What has any of it accomplished you ask? Some of it's got a good beat and you can dance to it.:p

EClyde EClyde said:

Those Linux users who bash Microsoft are miserable *****s who are just jealous that Windows is a successful platform.

No, they aren't jealous. What makes you think they even care? Linux blows BUT with Steam taking the lead that may change

Neojt said:

Comming from a guy that said we would never need more than 16MB or ram.... ill wait and see

Guest said:

Those Linux users who bash Microsoft are miserable *****s who are just jealous that Windows is a successful platform.

No, they aren't jealous. What makes you think they even care? Linux blows BUT with Steam taking the lead that may change

People use Windows primarily for the productivity software that depends on Windows. It's going to take more than Steam to change Linux's fortune.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

It's going to take more than Steam to change Linux's fortune.
Sure but it is a great place to start. And it is a warm welcome to the Linux family that they have been waiting a decade to receive. Just wait and see if Steam is successful. And if so you won't have to worry about finding an application as everyone (except for maybe MS/Apple) will be releasing a Linux version.

Guest said:

In 2035 there will be no poor countries, but there will be no rich countries as well. Because there will be no countries. And no people. Maybe even no planet!

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

In 2035 there will be no poor countries, but there will be no rich countries as well. Because there will be no countries. And no people. Maybe even no planet!
Right on Guestikins! I'm with you on this wholeheartedly. I still think those poor dinosaurs got a really raw deal, like with that asteroid hit and all.

They should still be running this hominid infested s***hole to this day...!

LNCPapa LNCPapa said:

There are too many short sighted people posting in this thread. Seems like there is no chance of this one ever being productive.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

There are too many short sighted people posting in this thread. Seems like there is no chance of this one ever being productive.
The topic wasn't particularly interesting, nor productive. Why wouldn't you expect the thread to follow suit? Bill Gates' current path, while perhaps commendable, is a bit idiosyncratic, to say the least. It certainly doesn't lend hm any street cred as being prescient.

Bill Gates predicting what the world will be like more than 20 years from now, is pretty ludicrous.

I'm sure he'll tell you what he'd like to see out the windows of his ivory tower, but for the rest of us, how about a reality check in the here and now.

I have to admit though, I'm having myself a good chuckle, picturing Bill Gates dressed in drag as a gypsy fortune teller.

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