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Income inequality still alarmingly high

Income inequality still alarmingly high

Despite a slight reduction of 2.5% in income distribution, the countrystill has a long way to go in achieving equal income distribution.
These preliminary figures by the Namibia Statistics Agency were revealed this week. The statistics agency observed that there is only a slight reduction of 2.5% in income distribution in the last five years.
According to the survey conducted by the agency in 2009/2010, income distribution stood at 59.7% and now, five years later (2015/2016) at 57.2%.
“The proportion of the population who are extremely poor, in other words those who fall below the food poverty line, is 5.8%, the severely poor is 11% and while those who are poor is 18% of the population,” Statistician-General, Alex Shimuafeni said at a press conference this week.
However, the statistics agency added that comparing the poverty levels of 2009/2010 to 2015/2016, there is an overall reduction in the proportion of the population which is poor, from 28.7% in 2009/2010 to 18% in 2015/2016. The severely poor reduced from 15.3 to 11% while the poor reduced from 7.3% to 5.8% respectively.
“The overall poverty levels have reduced significantly with 10.7% points since the last time we measured it while the inequality in income distribution showed a slight reduction of 2.5% points,” Shimuafeni said.
During the listing period, a total number of 69 910 private households were listed compared to 51 625 households during the 2011 census. This implies that the number of households have increased by 35%.
While this figures are only preliminary, the agency noted that the final report will be released next year. The agency also announced that the Namibia Inter-Censal Democratic and Labour Force Survey came to an end. Shimuafeni explained that the agency is still busy with the data analysis in terms of cross tabulations of the survey and will release more indicators on income and expenditure patterns as well as poverty profiles for the country and the regions once the analysis is completed next year. “Although we are still with data analysis to produce all indicators for the main report of the survey, I believe the poverty figures that we release today are important in setting targets for NDP5 as well as for the revision of the NDP4 that is due to end on 31 March 2017,” Shimuafeni said.

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