Are developing countries a set of homogenous group?

Some common characteristics:

1. Mass Poverty:Low levels of living Per Capita Income – LOW income countries $350, MIDDLE income countries $2220, HIGH income countries $19,950

2. Highly skewed income distribution Brazil 46% of Income-with top 10% of households, Peru 36%, Guatemala 40%

3. Substantial Dependence on agriculture 30-60% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Low Income Countries

4. Importance of Primary products in trade- In Low income Countries. Food and Raw Materials – 51% of value of exports in 1990s whereas in High Income Countries its only 19%

5.  High rates of Population growth and the structure of the population for LOW income countries 2.6% per annum (p.a), Middle income countries 2% p.a, HIGH income countries 0.6%. In 1990, 35% of the population in LOW, MID was between 0-14 yrs, whereas for HIGH 19%

6.  Dependency and vulnerability in international relations –World Bank and International Monetary Fund etc.

Some differences:

  • The size of a country
  • Historical background
  • Physical and human resources
  • Ethnicity and religion
  • Importance of public and private sectors
  • Importance of primary, secondary and tertiary sectors
  • External economic, political and cultural dependence
  • Interests and power of different groups

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