Cyprus: 22.3% below poverty line in 2018

Cyprus: 22.3% below poverty line in 2018

Based on the results by the 2019 Income and Living Conditions Survey, with 2018 as a reference year, 22.3% of the population or 194,400 people were at risk of poverty or social exclusion.

Specifically, 22.3% of the population lived in households with disposable income below the poverty line or with severe material deprivation or with a low work intensity index. The index shows an improvement compared to the previous year which was at 23.9%, continuing the downward tendency of recent years, after peaking at 25.9% in 2015. The improvement is evident in both the male and female population, with 21.2% and 23.3% respectively, although females remain at a disadvantaged position compared to males over time.

At-Risk-of Monetary Poverty Indicator (AROP)

The percentage of the population at risk of poverty, that is, the disposable income of whom was below the at-risk-of-poverty threshold, showed a decrease, reaching 14.7% compared to 15.4% in 2018. The index reached its apex in 2015 with 16.2%. The At-Risk-of Monetary Poverty Indicator increased in 2019 to € 9,729 for one-person households compared to € 9,202 in 2018, and to € 20,431 for households with two adults and two dependent children, compared to € 19,323 in 2018.

Serious Material Deprivation Index (SMD)

The percentage of the population with Severe Material Deprivation, that is, the percentage of the population that due to financial difficulties could not, for example, repay their electricity/water bills or loans or could not have adequate heating in the winter or face an emergency but necessary expenditure, decreased in 2019 to 9.1% compared to 10.2% in 2018.

Low Intensity Index (LWI)

The percentage of the population aged 0-59 living in households with a Low Work Intensity Index, referring to adults in the household who worked less than 20% of their total capacity last year, also shows a decrease in 2019, reaching 6, 8% compared to 8.6% in 2018.

Economic Inequality

Average annual net disposable household income for 2019, with 2018 as a financial reference year, was € 33,584, up by of 9.0% compared to the previous year, which was € 30,807.

Economic inequality is mainly expressed in the quintuple income distribution index (S80/S20) and the Gini coefficient measuring inequality in income distribution. In 2019, the two rates of economic inequality, with 2018 as a reference year, showed an increase compared to the previous year, indicating a slight deterioration in the distribution of household income. Specifically, the S80/S20 index, which examines the share of income of the richest 20% of the population to the income of the poorest 20% of the population, climbed at 4.6 in 2019. That is, the income share of the richest 20% of the population was 4.6 times higher than the income of the poorest 20% of the population, compared to 4.3 in 2018. Finally, the Gini coefficient increased to 31.1% , in relation to 2018’s 29.1%. /ibna