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'Average Zimbabwean lived on US$1.15 in September'

by Staff reporter
29 Oct 2020 at 21:07hrs | Views
The average Zimbabwean needed at least $3 591 not to be considered poor in September. This translates to US$1.15 per day and this is a significant improvement from June 2020 levels of US$0.75 but still lower than 2013, when the total consumption poverty line averaged US$1.20.
 
 The World Bank defines as poor, a society which lives below US$1.90 per day while it has a standard of US$3.20 for middle income countries and US$5.50 for upper middle-income countries. Zimbabwe is targeting to be an upper middle-income country by 2030 but with poverty levels and inequality rising, the target is increasingly becoming difficult to achieve.
 
According to data from Zimstat, the Total Consumption Poverty Line (TCPL) for one person stood at $3 591 in September while a family of five persons needed at least $17 957 from $17 224 in August. The TCPL for one person shows an increase of 4.1% from the $3 449 reported in August.  Earlier in the year United Nations Development Programme in its Human Development Index for 2019 classified 31.8% of the population as multi-dimensionally poor while an additional 27.4% are classified as vulnerable to multidimensional poverty.

The differences between the TCPL bands on the country's ten provinces has somewhat increased significantly against the national average highlighting differences in the resumption of economic activities in different provinces over the period. Due to distance and access, the highest living costs per household is still registered in Matabeleland North at $19 753 while Harare is at $17 570. Mashonaland Central has reclaimed its position as the poorest province as it has the lowest living cost at $17 409, followed by Manicaland, which is at $17 524.
 
Zimstat conducts the TCPL survey based on 495 items and is based on the average size of households established at the last population census in 2012. The ILO recommends that the TCPL should be used as a benchmark or reference point in determining minimum wages.
 
In terms of the food poverty line (FPL), an individual in Zimbabwe needed $1 477 up 2.4% from $1 442.20 in August to consume 2 100 calories recommended by health practitioners. In the same month, a family of five needed to spend $7 383 on food alone in September up from $7 211 in the previous month.

The number of people living below the TCPL is expected to increase going forward due to a slowdown in economic activity experienced in the second quarter due to the coronavirus-induced lockdowns.

Source - finx

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