Poverty is on the rise in Egypt with the number of poor mounting to 21.6% in 2008/2009, a 2% jump from 2004 and 2005, according to a new study.
According to a study conducted by the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics, the vast number of poor were concentrated in the South of the country with as many as 43.7% of the population living under poverty line. However, urban areas had the lowest percentage with only 6.9% of their populations considered poor.
The study has also revealed that the percentage of illiteracy among poor families has increased to 41% as opposed to 24% in non-poor families. Additionally, 11% of members of non-poor families have university degrees, but only 2% of members of poor families have university qualifications.
The vast gap between the poor and non-poor in Egypt was also apparent in marriage, with 64% of members of non-poor families being married as compared to 57% in poor families.
The study also points out that the number of employed reached 53.5% among the non-poor and 48.7% among poor Egyptians.