PSA: Pandemic raised number of poor in 2021

The unprecedented anti-COVID-19 measures reduced income support schemes, particularly for poorer people who were forced to stay home, pushing the number of Filipinos who identified themselves as poor to 3.5 million families in 2021, higher by 5.9 percent compared to the previous year.

Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) Undersecretary Dennis Mapa said at least 13.2 percent of the 110 million Filipinos considered themselves poor last year, an increase of 12.1 percent from the 2018 figure.

“It was estimated that a family of five needs at least P8,379 per month to meet their basic food requirements,” Mapa said.

Mapa said the subsistence incidence among families was recorded at 3.9 percent, equivalent to 1.04 million low-income families living below the food poverty line.

Mapa also reported that based on the 2021 Preliminary Results of the Family Income and Expenditure Survey (FIES), poverty incidence among the population, defined as the proportion of Filipinos whose per capita income could not sufficiently meet the individual basic food and non-food needs, was recorded at 18.1 percent of the population.

He said this translates to around 19.99 million Filipinos who lived below the poverty threshold of about P12,030 per month for a family of five.

On the other hand, the subsistence incidence, defined as the proportion of Filipinos whose income is not enough to meet their basic food needs, slightly increased to 5.9 percent in 2021.

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