PH with one of the highest income inequality rates among 63 nations, says World Bank

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 24) -- The Philippines ranked 15th out of 63 countries in terms of income inequality, the World Bank (WB) found in a 2022 study.

"Disparities in income and consumption continue to be higher in the Philippines than in neighboring countries. With an income Gini coefficient of 42.3% in 2018, the Philippines ranks 15th of 63 countries for which data on income inequality are available," the WB wrote in a report released on Thursday.

The Gini coefficient is a statistical measure to represent income inequality in the context of a country or social group.

"Of EAP [East Asia Pacific] countries for which data are available for 2014-19, only in Thailand is income inequality greater than in the Philippines," the report continued.

According to the study, 1% of Filipino earners share 17% of the national income while the bottom 50% collectively receive 14%.

It further enumerated that while poverty had fallen by two-thirds between 1985 and 2018 - from 49.2% to 16.7%, respectively - income inequality only began its decline in 2012.

The WB report linked "unequal opportunities, lack of access to tertiary education and a scarcity of skills, coupled with inequality in returns to college education, gendered social norms and childcare, and spatial gaps," as the factors which sustain high income inequality rates.