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EU classifies 1 percent of Swedes as 'poor'

4 Mar 2013, 10:17

Published: 04 Mar 2013 10:17 GMT+01:00

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In Sweden and in the EU at large, it is the unemployed who are most at risk of living in what Eurostat dubs "serious material poverty". A person is considered poor if he or she does not satisfy four out of nine criteria, which include:

Not being able to cover an unforeseen expense, not being able to afford to eat meat, poultry or fish more than every other day. It also covers heating your home, having access to one week paid holiday a year, owning capital goods such as a washing machine or a car.

Sweden and Luxembourg have the EU's lowest proportion of citizens or residents living below the material poverty line - both at about 1 percent.

The EU average was 9 percent.

Bulgarians fare the worst, as 44 percent of its population are considered materially poor. Almost one in three Lithuanians also don't satisfy four of the nine material criteria outlined by Eurostat.

The EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions review is performed annually.

Across the EU, the unemployed fared the worse.

In Sweden, about 10 percent of job seekers live in material poverty, compared to the 1-percent national average.

Story continues below…

The figure was much higher in other member states. On average, one in four of the unemployed in the EU lives in material poverty, while only one in ten of people who have found work do.

Ann Törnkvist

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Your comments about this article

11:22 March 4, 2013 by rise
I can see why "Bulgarians fare the worst". I have been there and it nearly broke my heart to see how many of them were struggling in poverty.

If thinking you're having it poorly, you need to travel to eastern Europe and open your eyes. Over there many are still living in the ruin of the fallen Soviet Union.
11:39 March 4, 2013 by RobinHood
Last year, the Swedish Red Cross told us, one in ten Swedish children lives in poverty. Boooooo! This year, Eurostat tells us that only one percent of all Swedes lives in poverty, the best in the EU. Hooray! Both organisations cannot be right, the divergence is massive and inexplicable.

Either Eurostat or the Swedish Red Cross is incompetent, and/or is deliberately misinforming us.

Those of us who live in Sweden and actually see Swedish children know the truth.
12:06 March 4, 2013 by unionisten
well RobinHood clearly the redcross is wrong
14:52 March 4, 2013 by byke
This news is being discussed more in depth in the forum, under the Swedish news section.

As mentioned on that discussion it is believed the stats could have come from a very questionable source, Swedish speakers only, on home phone lines only, during the day time only ..... Etc etc ..... All the sort of qualities of a survey which I highly doubt would be representational of "poor people".

Also this news is actually from the 3rd of December LAST YEAR LOL.

And the stats themselves are representational of 2 years ago LOL .....

Make of it what you will.

But I would urge anyone interested in real Swedish news to come to the forum.
14:58 March 4, 2013 by riose

I think the difference is the way of measuring poverty.

Probably Red Cross was focusing on need. Walk on the outskirts of Stockholm one of those very cold days (under -15) and you will find kids playing outside with sneakers. If you ask them they will deny being poor (everybody around is like them!), but there is no money at home to buy winter shoes, or fresh veggies, or after-school activities.

There is some people in very bad economical situation out there, living here is expensive, and they get pushed to misery.
15:37 March 4, 2013 by Gardian
lets be honest and fair the 1% in poverty line in sweden are immigrants mostly with foreign background, and that is why now one in rest of the country really care about that. as long as the unemployed person is an immigrants/ refugee there is nothing to worry about it.

I wonder one poverty line cross and hit swedes, I am sure only then we will react seriously about this. but how ? simple .. to ask the few immigrants and refugees who are working to leave and back home, so that swedes get job.
10:35 March 5, 2013 by Reason and Realism
Why not the usual headline from the Local: 'EU SLAMS Sweden for 1% poverty level'.

Seems the EU is always 'slamming' Sweden on a variety of items over which it outperforms most of Europe and the World.
10:39 March 5, 2013 by Danne8
^^^^^^ Troll comment above. Recommended to omit.
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