PH: 2.5 million Filipinos out of poverty level, Palace official
The poverty rate went down to 24.9 percent in the first semester of 2013, from 27.9 percent in the same period in 2012, President Aquino said during his fifth State-of-the-Nation Address.
That interprets into a number of 2.5 million Filipinos who have crossed the poverty line.
The statistics were extracted from the result of an annual poverty indicator survey conducted by the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA).
According to Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda, the government has a formula for computing poverty incidence, which takes into consideration the number of families, their salary below the poverty income level threshold, over the number of families that are part of that.
“So there has been a three percent decrease in poverty, insofar as the annual poverty incidence survey is concerned,” he said.
Meanwhile, another survey on self-rated poverty and hunger conducted and released by the Social Weather Stations (SWS) on the same day suggested that showing the number of families rating themselves poor increased to 55 percent or 12.1 million families, from 53 percent or 11.5 million families in March.
“We have no problem with that. We respect that survey,” the Presidential Spokesperson commented on the event, noting however that the result of the SWS survey fluctuates as it is done on a quarterly basis.
It takes time to fight against poverty and the Aquino administration cannot wipe out poverty by 2016, Lacierda said. He assured however that the government will strive harder to uplift the lives of Filipinos in the country.