By Rana Yehia
Approximately 9.2 million children aged between 0-17 years old are living in poverty, according to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS).
The figures show that 28% of the total number of children in this age category live in poverty.
Furthermore, in its statistical abstract issued about child poverty in Egypt, CAPMAS said 53% of these children live in Upper Egypt.
Meanwhile, the number of children living between the upper and lower poverty lines was approximately 7.5 million during fiscal year (FY) 2012-2013. CAPMAS noted that the poverty percentages have been continually increasing over the past 15 years, especially since FY 2010-2011.
While the majority of the children live in rural Upper Egypt, the percentage of poverty in urban governorates has significantly increased in the past few years. This reflects the impact of the long-term economic recession since 2011.
Data from the statistical report showed the extent of poverty in Egypt in accordance with the lower poverty line average was valued at approximately EGP 3,920 per person per year during 2012/2013, or about EGP 10.7 daily, reflecting a low level of consumption.
However, “the upper poverty line”, which represents families most likely to be exposed to poverty, reached EGP 5,066 per year, or EGP 13.9 per day.
There are 22million family members in Egypt, where two out of five family members are children, with their consumption level below the level of national poverty line.
The percentage of child poverty has increased rapidly due to the economic recession during the four years between FY 2008-2009 and 2012-2013. The number of children suffering from poverty increased from 7 million in 2008-2009 to 9.2 in 2012-2013, representing a 5% increase.
Despite the poverty percentage reaching its highest levels in rural Upper Egypt, the percentages are also high in the urban regions of Upper Egypt, recording 29%, and in the border governorates reaching 26.5%.
Other regions also recorded high levels of child poverty. Lower Egyptian governorates recorded 11.4% in urban regions, and 17.4% in rural regions, whereas urban governorates reached 17.9%.
Statistics also showed that the number of children living in poverty in Upper Egypt rural regions is the highest recording 4.9 million, followed by rural regions in northern governorates with 1.8 million, then urban regions in Upper Egypt with 1.1 million, whereas the urban governorates reached 900,000 child.