A thousand dollars or less per person per year in GDP - the consequence of poverty, genocide, years of war, lack of natural resources, poor farm management, and limited access to clean water and health care.
This is the follow-up to 24/7 Wall St.'s Twenty Most Productive Nations. Eighteen of the poorest countries by GDP per capita are in Africa. That is not surprising given the famine and war that have racked the continent for the better part of the last four decades. Contributing to these hardships is that many of these countries were recently territories or protectorates of European nations.
The concentration of poverty and the lack of national productivity would have looked very different five decades ago. In the 1960s, China and India were relatively poor nations, with huge populations, low literacy rates, and tremendous untapped resources. Both nations improved their fortunes through education programs and through the organization of rural populations who were brought to cities to turn raw materials into finished goods.