By Chino Leyco
The country’s poverty rate dropped last year due to improved labor market conditions that increased the salaries and wages of Filipinos, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported on Friday.
Poverty incidence among population, or the proportion of poor Filipinos whose per capita income is not sufficient to meet their basic food and non-food needs, was estimated at 16.6 percent in 2018.
The latest figure was lower compared with 23.3 percent in 2015.
National Statistician Claire Dennis S. Mapa said the poverty rate translates to 17.6 million Filipinos who lived below the poverty threshold estimated at P10,727 on average, for a family of five per month in 2018.
With a poverty reduction rate of 2.23 percentage points per annum, Socioeconomic Planning Undersecretary Adoracion M. Navarro said the government is on track to meet its goal of bringing down poverty incidence to 14 percent by 2022.
“We are also likely to meet the Sustainable Development Goal or SDG target of eradicating extreme poverty as defined by the international poverty line, and cutting by half the proportion of the population living below the national poverty line by 2030,” Navarro said.