LESS FILIPINOS fell into poverty in the first half of 2018, the Philippine Statistics Authority reported earlier this morning.
Results of the First Semester 2018 Official Poverty Statistics by the PSA placed poverty incidence among individuals — the proportion of Filipinos whose incomes fell below the per capita poverty threshold of P10,481 per month — at 21%, compared to 27.6% recorded in the first half of 2015.
The latest poverty data translates to a reduction of more than five million poor individuals to 23.1 million in 2018 compared to 28.8 million in 2015, the PSA noted in the press conference earlier this morning.
The subsistence incidence among Filipinos — or the proportion of those whose incomes fell below the P7,337-per-month food threshold — went down to 8.5% in the first semester of 2018 from 13% in the first semester of 2015.
Food threshold is the minimum income required to meet basic food needs and satisfy the nutritional requirements set by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute to ensure that one remains “economically and socially productive.”
Similarly, the poverty threshold is the minimum income needed to meet basic food and non-food needs such as clothing, housing, transportation, health, and education expenses.
Likewise, poverty incidence among Filipino families went down to 16.1% in the first half of 2018 from 22.2% in the first half of 2015.
The subsistence incidence among families — or the proportion of those who fell into extreme poverty — improved 6.2% from 9.9%.
In the first semester of 2018, on the average, incomes of poor families were short by 26.9% of the poverty threshold, the PSA noted.
This means that, on the average, an additional monthly income of P2,819 was needed by a poor family with five members in order to move out of poverty in the first semester of 2018.
The report marked the first set of official poverty statistics from the Family Income and Expenditure Survey 2018 which, according to the PSA, started to use a sample size of around 180,000 households “deemed sufficient to provide estimates at the provincial level and highly urbanized cities cognizant of the need for more disaggregated data.” — Marissa Mae M. Ramos