Monetary poverty increases in Colombia, according to official data

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More than 660,000 Colombians entered the monetary poverty, which means having a monthly income per person of less than 72 euros, the National Administrative Department of Statistics (DANE) reported on Tuesday, in a document stating that 35.7% of the citizens of this South American country lived in 2019 in this condition.

“Between 2018 and 2019, 662,000 people entered into monetary poverty (…) In 2019, 35.7% of Colombians were in a condition of monetary poverty, which represents an increase of 1.0 percentage point compared to 2018, when it was 34.7% “DANE detailed in a statement.

Cities with the poorest

Along these lines, the agency pointed out that last year 17.4 million people were in monetary poverty, while in 2018 that figure corresponded to 16.8 million.

“Additionally, monetary poverty in the populated centers and rural zones dispersed was 47.5%, which represents an increase of 1.5 percentage points compared to 2018 when it was 46%, “the information added.

The cities with lower percentages are Manizales (20.6%) and Cali (21.9%), while the highest data are found in Quibdó (60.9%) and Riohacha (49.3%), cities located in the departments of Chocó and La Guajira, respectively.

Monetary poverty line

According to DANE, a Colombian household has monetary poverty if the monthly income per person is less than 327,674 pesos (about 72 euros).

On the other hand, DANE indicated that 729,000 people entered the extreme monetary poverty last year, bringing the total number of people living in this situation to 4.6 million people.

“In 2019, the percentage of people living in extreme monetary poverty, in the national total, was 9.6%. In the capital cities this proportion was 6.8% and in the populated centers and dispersed rural, 19.3%” , DANE specified.

Income inequality

By cities, the lowest percentages are Manizales (1.9%) and Pereira (2.6%), both in the Eje Cafetero region, while the highest are Quibdó (23.8%) and Riohacha (19.5%).

The agency warns that in Colombia a family falls into extreme monetary poverty if its members have an income of less than 137,350 pesos (about 30 euros). Meanwhile, income inequality, measured by the Gini coefficient – in which 0 represents absence of inequality and 1 maximum inequality – stood at 0.517 last year.

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