Less 200,000 Portuguese living with material deprivation in 2017

"The deprivation rate has been significantly reduced, which means that when the effects of the measures taken by the Government in 2017 are applied to these figures, it will undoubtedly translate into an even greater improvement in social indicators", said the Minister of Work, Solidarity and Social Security, Vieira da Silva.

These statements were made at the press conference after the Council of Ministers, regarding the Survey on Living and Income Conditions, whose data were revealed today by the National Statistics Institute (INE).

Among the main measures taken by the Government in the social area, the Minister stressed "the increase of family allowance, reduction of the penalization in the unemployment subsidy and the increase of the pensions". 

Greater reduction of poverty rate since 2007

'The most important points I would like to emphasize are, first of all, the reduction of the poverty rate' by 0.7 percentage points, 'the most significant reduction since 2007, especially in the young, Vieira da Silva also said.

Secondly, the Minister said that 'the data revealed are encouraging, even if we maintain high levels of poverty in various sectors'. Poverty in the elderly was another area with more positive developments.

"The government has the notion that the situation in the country still requires a very large collective effort to create jobs and improve wages and social policies," he concluded.

Less material deprivation and severe material deprivation

Although the number of Portuguese living with material deprivation has fallen by 200,000, there are still 1.8 million men, women and children in the country without access to at least three items from a list of nine topics related to economic needs and durable goods due to economic difficulties.

The list includes delays in the payment of rents, loans or running costs of the house, whether or not to eat a meat and fish meal every two days, whether or not to have a car, television or washing machine , or to be able to cope with the payment of an unexpected expense.

According to survey data, 'in 2017, there are fewer people in material deprivation (18%) than in 2016 (19.5%)'. The number of people living in severe material deprivation has also fallen, that is, the number of prohibited items rises to at least four from the list of nine: 711 thousand (6.9%) in 2017 against 866 thousand (8.4 %) in 2016.

Main Material Deprivations

INE also reveals that 44.3% of Portuguese people live in families unable to afford one week of vacations per year outside the home (against 47.2% in 2016 and 51.3% in 2015).

Almost 400,000 people said they did not have the capacity to keep the house warm (20.4% in 2017, against 22.5% in 2016 and 23.8% in 2015). 

About 37% of the Portuguese do not have the capacity to ensure the immediate payment of an unexpected expense without recourse to a 

(compared to 38.3% in 2016 and 40.7% in 2015).

There are 7.6% of Portuguese whose families do not have the capacity to pay rents or current expenses in a timely manner (against 9.3% in 2016 and 10.1% in 2015).

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