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Number of Czechs living in poverty dropped in 2017

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Prague, Jan 29 (CTK) – The number of people living below the income poverty line and in material deprivation decreased in the Czech Republic last year, according to preliminary results of a survey of living conditions in 2017 that Czech Statistical Office (CSU) spokeswoman Petra Bacova released to CTK on Monday.

In 2017, the number of Czechs living belowpoverty line dropped by 50,000, compered to 2016, to some 970,000, that is from 9.7 percent to 9.2 percent of the 10.5-million population of the country.

The number of the people who were living in material deprivation and could not afford four and more out of nine items, including a washing machine, a TV set, a car, an extraordinary spending of 10,000 crowns, a week-long holiday and regular payment of a rent and instalments, dropped last year, too.

There were about 390,000 of them in the country, that is 110,000 fewer than the year before.

Statisticians are monitoring three categories of poverty and social expulsion – income poverty, material deprivation and labour.

The income poverty level corresponds to 60 percent of the national median income, which a half of inhabitants achieve.

The CSU has not yet released the sum for 2017. In 2016 it was 10,691 crowns per individual. However, wages were rising last year, and this is why the poverty line is to rise, too.

“According to preliminary estimates, the number of the people living in materially deprived households has considerably dropped by more than 110,000 people. The material deprivation level decreased in 2017 by 1.1 percent to 3.7 percent, compared to the year before,” Bacova said.

The total level of income poverty and social exclusion threat dropped from 13.3 to 12.3 percent year-on-year and afflicted some 1.3 million people last year, compared with 1.4 million in 2016.

“The Czech Republic is still among the European countries with the lowest level of this indicator,” Simona Merinska, from the CSU household survey section, said.

Statisticians annually start collecting the respective data on income poverty and social exclusion in the Czech Republic on February 3. They will look into the situation of more than 11,000 households until May 27.

Similar surveys are carried out in other countries, too, so experts have the data to compare from 34 European countries eventually.

The CSU will have the final data for 2017 in April and will release them at a press conference.

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