Egyptian families report greater money worries in 2012

Ahram Online, Tuesday 5 Mar 2013

Government survey suggests the number of Egyptians struggling to make ends meet rose last year

A woman carries a gas cylinder distributed to poor people by the army in Cairo (Photo: Reuters)

The economic conditions of Egyptian families deteriorated after the revolution, according to a survey of households by an Egyptian state body.

The survey, conducted by the Information and Decision Support Centre (IDSC), the Cabinet's think tank, was carried out last summer, with the results released this week.

According to the data, 57.5 percent of families said their income was insufficient to cover their needs in May 2012, compared with only 45.1 percent in 2010.

The IDSC stressed that the phenomenon is more serious in rural areas, where more than 60 percent of families say their income is not enough to cover their needs, compared with 54.3 percent of families living in urban areas.

Many Egyptians believe that the economic situation has deteriorated after the revolution, with 38.7 percent of the sample saying that their economic conditions had worsened over the last year.

The percentage saying that the economic conditions of the country were worse in terms of prices, investment or production increased by 10 percent in May 2012 from figures in June 2010, to reach 67 per cent.

The survey said that 66.5 percent of Egyptian families worry about being burgled.

Sixty-five percent of the respondents believed poverty to be the main motive for burglaries, while 10.7 percent blamed unemployment and 10 percent believed the reason was the security vacuum.

According to official figures, the prices of different items, including fruits, vegetables, meats and dairy products have increased over the past two years.

The official poverty rate jumped from 21.6 percent in 2008/2009 to 25.2 percent in 2010/2011. The results released by IDSC did not provide any more recent figures.

The national poverty line is set at LE1,270 pounds per month per family.

According to the IDSC report, the unemployment rate reached 12.6 percent in June 2012, from 9 percent two years before.

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