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World Bank: Turkey’s Poverty Rate Increases for 2nd Consecutive Year

World Bank: Turkey’s Poverty Rate Increases for 2nd Consecutive Year

Sunday, 16 May, 2021 - 11:00
People shop at a meat store in Fatih district in Istanbul, Turkey. (Reuters file photo)

The World Bank revealed that the poverty rate increased in Turkey for the second consecutive year, and according to reports, suicide rates are also up due to difficult living conditions.

A World Bank report stated that poverty is estimated to have risen to 12.2 percent in 2020 from 10.2 percent in 2019, noting that bringing the rate back to pre-pandemic levels presents a challenge.

The World Bank issued its latest edition of the “Turkey Economic Monitor (TEM): Navigating the Waves”, which takes stock of recent economic developments and provides the World Bank’s analysis of economic prospects in the country.

It said the recovery in late 2020 has helped labor markets recover, however, many have been left behind, especially women, youth and lower-skilled workers.

Research by the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) revealed a 38-percent increase in suicide rates between 2017 and 2019, revealing that while 232 people killed themselves in 2017 for economic reasons, the number increased to 312 in 2019.

The Turkish Statistical Institute announced last month that the unemployment rate in 2020 was 13.2 percent, with a total of 4.61 million people.

Following the economic crisis in the country, about 1.2 million families applied for subsidies in Istanbul alone.

The economy was negatively affected by the coronavirus pandemic for the second year, leading thousands of factories and companies to shut down.

CHP Deputy Leader Seyit Torun said that the municipalities of the party have started preparing a “poverty map”, according to the areas which apply for aid.

Turkey's inflation rate reached a new record last month, reaching 17.14 percent year-on-year.

A study by the Confederation of Turkish Trade Unions revealed the impact of the economic crisis, greatly exacerbated by the pandemic, on low-income families, indicating that the monthly food expenses for a family of four have reached 2,719 liras.

The study, published Saturday, pointed out that other necessary monthly expenditures including clothing, housing, transportation, education and health cost about 8,856 liras in February.

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