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Survey of Living Conditions / Household Budget Survey Commences

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The Enhanced Country Poverty Assessment

Country Poverty Assessments (CPAs) in the Caribbean use the Survey of Living Conditions (SLC) as the main source of robust quantitative data to generate key quantitative poverty, indigence, inequality and vulnerability indicators and to evaluate living conditions at a point in time. Usually in Country Poverty Assessments of the OECS, the Survey of Living Conditions is combined with a Household Budgetary Survey (HBS), which collects expenditure data in a much more detailed format than would typically be collected in the normal SLC. The more detailed expenditure survey is mainly for the update of our Consumer Price Index basket, which is used in the computation of Grenada inflation rate.

The Central Statistical Office is responsible for the quantitative component of the eCPA which is the Survey of Living Conditions and a Household Budget Survey. Surveys of Living Conditions (SLCs) have become institutionalised in the Caribbean as Governments seek to establish with detailed quantitative analysis the extent of the impact on distribution of economic and social policies. The assessment of the conditions under which the poorest and most vulnerable live is of extreme interest given the primary objective of poverty reduction as articulated in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Grenada has identified Goal I of the SDG -End poverty in all its forms everywhere as one of its key priorities which is reflected in the framing of its National Sustainable Development Plan. More specifically, strategic outcome 1 in the Ministry of Finance’s Corporate Plan focusses on reducing poverty unemployment and inequality. The Government of Grenada in its 2018 budget Statement indicated that the Budget is anchored on our country’s Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy 2014-2018 which speaks to government’s commitment to reducing poverty in all its forms.

Poverty measurement has traditionally unidimensional measure in determining poverty rates, using income or consumption levels. But evidence suggests that poverty is not unidimensional in nature. No one indicator, uniquely captures the multiple aspects that contribute to poverty. Research has also revealed that levels and trends of consumption poverty are not highly correlated with trends in other basic variables such as child mortality, primary school completion rates, or undernourishment (Bourguignon et al 2010). Hence, a person or household can be consumption poor but multi-dimensionally non-poor, or consumption rich but experiencing poverty in other dimensions. This enhanced approach to the measurement of poverty seeks to capture the multi-dimensional nature of this condition, which will allow for better targeting of resources.

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