Those at risk of poverty ‘after social transfers’, rises by 1.5%

The number of Maltese people at risk of poverty after receiving ‘social transfers’ or benefits, has increased by 1.5% in the decade between 2008 and 2018.

That’s according to figures from the European Data aggregator EUROSTAT, which shows that the percentage of people still at risk of poverty after receiving ‘social transfers’ has increased from 15.3% to 16.8%.

These figures come from EUROSTAT’s report recognising the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.

When compared to fellow Southern European states, Spain and Italy also recorded increases in the percentage of people at risk after social transfers. While the former recorded an increase from 19.8% to 21.5% between 2008 and 2018, Italy’s increase was recorded as 18.9% to 20.3%. 

In contrast, Greece, Cyprus and Portugal recorded drops in this area. Greece saw a drop from 20.1% in 2008 to 18.5% in 2018. Cyprus saw a drop from 15.9% in 2008 to 15.4% in 2018. Portugal recorded a fall from 18.5% in 2008 to 17.3% in 2018.

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The report also shows that while the percentage of the Maltese population at risk of poverty and social exclusion has decreased from 20.1% to 19.0%, while the number of people affected has increased. This is reflected as a rise of 9,000 people, from 81,000 in 2008 to 89,000 in 2018.

As with fellow Southern European states, Portugal was the only country to record a drop in the number of people affected. This was recorded as a rise from 2,757,000 to 2,223,000 in the decade period, from 26.0% to 21.6%.

Likewise, Greece, Spain, Italy and Cyprus recorded overall increases between 2008 and 2018. Greece’s levels increased from 28.1% to 31.8, (3,046,000 to 3,349,000). Spain’s levels rose from 23.8% to 26.1%, (10,786,000 to 12,047,000). Italy’s levels were the highest of the group, rising from 25.5% to 27.3%, (15,082,000 to 16,411,000). Cyprus in this case, recorded a rise from 23.3% to 23.9% (181,000 to 206,000).

 Other poverty indicators decreasing

According to the other AROPE indicators, Malta’s level of severely materially deprived had fallen from 4.3% to 3.0% in the decade period. This is also seen in the percentage drop of people aged between 0-59 who are working in low work intensity households.

This latter indicator fell from 8.6% to 5.5% between 2008 and 2018.

The figures also show that the threshold for a single adult has increased from €11,713 to €14.410 in the decade period. Likewise, for two adults with two children under 14 years old, the rate has increased from €24,598 to €30.260.