Out of all European Union member states, the Czech Republic has the lowest share of people threatened with poverty when welfare benefits are calculated. Only 9.7% of residents in the country live on or below the verge of income poverty, according to the country’s newly released statistical yearbook.
The yearbook was issued by the Czech Statistical Office (CSU).
As reported by the Prague Daily Monitor, the average poverty level in the EU 28 and the euro zone is 17%. The Czech Republic has the lowest share, followed by Finland and Netherlands with 11.6% of inhabitants facing income poverty. It’s the worst in Romania with 25%.
However, the trade unions and organisations helping people in need point to the problems of “working poverty” in the Czech Republic due to very low wages. Many people can hardly satisfy their basic needs though they do work.
The income poverty level corresponds to 60% of the national median income, which a half of inhabitants achieve.
According to a study on the minimum wage and living standards conducted for the Tripartite Council of representatives of the government, unions and employers, 174,500 workers lived in poverty due to low earnings in the Czech Republic in 2011, which represented 5% of all employees. In 2015, their number rose to 299,000 (almost 7%).