Working without enough for the basic basket

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Although during the six-year term of Andrés Manuel López Obrador the minimum wage went from 88 to 249 pesos, that is, an increase of 181 percent, working poverty still exists in the country, according to the latest report from the National Council for the Evaluation of Social Development Policy (Coneval).

This concept of working poverty refers to the percentage of the population whose income in this area is not enough to cover the cost of the basic basket in Mexico. Regarding this, the Council announced that between the third quarter of 2022 and the third quarter of 2023, the level of working poverty fell 2.8 percentage points, from 40.1 to 37.3 percent, which, although a reduction, represents 48.3 million people.

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The states where the highest level of this type of poverty is reported are Chiapas, Guerrero, and Oaxaca, where figures of 65.9 percent, 61.6 percent, and 58.8 percent are recorded, respectively.

The COVID-19 pandemic is still affecting Mexico

Although the decline represents progress coupled with salary growth, Mexico has not been able to alleviate the level of working poverty exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.

“The percentage of the working poverty population is higher than the percentage observed before the pandemic began in the first quarter of 2020 (36.6%),” the report said.

However, while an attempt was made to reduce the difference by 0.7 percentage points, the reduction in working poverty in the third quarter of 2023 was accompanied by an increase in employment, which registered 1.7 million additional people. which works out to be an increase of more than 11 percent every year in average real labor income per capita, according to Coneval.

“This change in workers’ income represents an estimated increase of 316.77 real pesos compared to the third quarter of 2022,” they explained.

In this context, the president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, announced a 20 percent increase in the minimum wage, which will put it at 249 pesos per day for workers in Mexico.

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