Zimbabweans living in poverty - study

Harare – An average person in Zimbabwe survives on US$1.16 per day, according to figures released by the Zimbabwe Statistical Office (ZimStats) under the Poverty Income Consumption and Expenditure Survey.
 
The World Bank defines extreme poverty as living on less than $1.25 per day, and moderate poverty as less than $2 a day.

The National Food Poverty Line for March as measured by ZimStats stood at $34.84 per person, an increase of 1% from $34.51, meaning that an average person survives on $1.16 per day.

The country’s poverty datum line for an average of five persons per household stood at $541 in March, a growth of 1.14% from the February figure of $535. It shows an increase of 1.2% from $534 in the comparable year-ago period.

The poverty line is the threshold below which families or individuals are considered to be lacking the resources to meet the basic needs for healthy living; in other words, having insufficient income to provide the food, shelter and clothing needed to preserve health.

The total consumption poverty line (TCPL) for one person stood at $108, an increase of 1.14% from February and a 1.2% increase year-on-year after food prices rose following the increase in fuel duty by the Finance Minister Tendai Biti.
 
This means that an individual required that much to purchase both non-food and food items as at March 2013, in order not to be deemed poor.

The Food Poverty Line (FPL) for a family of five was at $174, a decrease of 1% on a monthly basis and an increase of 5.5% on annual basis.

Generally, consumption is the preferred welfare indicator as it accords better with the idea of the standard of living than income, which can vary over time even if the actual standard of living does not.

The International Labour Organisation recommends that the PDL should be used as a benchmark or reference point in determining minimum wages.

 - Fin24

*Malcom Sharara is Fin24's correspondent in Zimbabwe.

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