The USA and Japan hold the leading positions among the world’s most industrially developed countries in terms of relative poverty. According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the percentage of US families whose profit is lower than the average income makes up 13.7. The number of such families in Japan reaches 13.5 percent.
A report from the organization says that the USA and Japan cannot guarantee sufficient income to all citizens despite a high level of economic development. The two countries take the first and the second place respectively on the level of relative poverty. The notion of ‘relative poverty’ defines a part of population receiving less than 50 percent of the average income in a country.
Specialists of the above-mentioned organization devoted a special chapter of their extensive report to Japan . The increasing number of relatively poor people in Japan is connected with the growing amount of office clerks working on temporal contracts at low-paid jobs. Their quantity has increased in Japan from 19 to 30 percent, which is a consequence of protracted economic depression in the country.
The growing gap between the poor and the rich can also be explained with the ongoing aging of the Japanese population. Many elderly people over 60 continue to work but they receive lower wages as opposed to their younger colleagues.
According to experts’ estimates, relative poverty can affect the economic development of Japan at the moment when the country tries to recover from a lengthy economic setback.
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov
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