While forcing citizens to work for no money may appeal to European policy-makers as a solution to their youth unemployment problem (as we discussed here and here), it is a problem that covers a stunning 35.8 million people in the world who are classified as slaves, according to the latest data.
China, India, and Pakistan top the list of modern slave nations (in absolute terms), but Mauritania is the most ‘slaved’ nation with 4% of the population in some kind of bondage.
As Gallup notes, most modern slavery is not visible to the general public, and victims may not be easy to identify using standard survey methods. Poverty is a clear risk factor behind modern slavery: Poorer countries tend to have more slaves; but a host of other factors may be perpetuating the problem, including traditional institutions, attitudes, social systems or poor governance, as well as individual risk factors such as lack of education or unemployment.
The Walk Free Foundation defines modern slavery as the deprivation of individual liberty for the purpose of exploitation. This broad definition includes many slavery-related practices such as human trafficking, forced labor, debt bondage, forced marriage, commercial sexual exploitation and the sale and exploitation of children.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on 11/17/2014.