MANILA, Philippines - If a family of 5 wants to get out and stay out of poverty, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) estimates it needs P258.96 per day.
This is equivalent to an average income of around P7,768.80 per month or P93,225.60 per year.
NEDA Director General Arsenio Balisacan said these are the amounts a household must earn to afford basic needs like food, water and clothing. These are based on the 2009 income poverty threshold the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) computed and indexed to inflation.
However, Balisacan noted these are just rough estimates and the government is still processing poverty data the National Statistics Office (NSO) gathered in 2012.
"(We will release the poverty data in the) first semester. We're still hoping to get it within the first quarter. It is just taking us some time because there are conceptual issues that need to be sorted out. It's not that easy," Balisacan said in a mix of Filipino and English.
The NSO conducted its Family Income Expenditure Survey (FIES) in 2012. The survey is conducted every 3 years.
However, starting 2013, Balisacan said the FIES will be done every year so that the government can carefully track its progress in reducing poverty incidence in the country.
Before retiring as NSCB Secretary General, Romulo Virola said the country must reduce poverty incidence by 2 percentage points every year until 2015 to achieve the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of halving poverty incidence.
Virola explained that under a new methodology used in the 2009 poverty statistics, poverty incidence in the country was recomputed at 33.1% in 1991, instead of the original 45.3%.
With this as new baseline, the MDG target was now to bring down poverty incidence to 16.5% by 2015.
Virola said the target was to reduce poverty from 24.5% in 2011 to 22.5% in 2012, 20.5% in 2013, 18.5% in 2014 and 16.5% in 2015.
Virola said poverty incidence was at 26.5% in 2009, up 0.1 percentage point from 26.4% in 2006. - Rappler.com
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