Latvia, Bulgaria, Romania and Greece top the list of the poorest countries among the 27-members of the European Union. According to a comparative survey conducted by the German Economic Institute (Wirtschaftsinstitut) in Cologne:
Least poor citizens are in Scandinavian countries Denmark, Sweden and Finland, but also in Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Austria.
The biggest problems with poverty have the relative new EU members Latvia, Bulgaria and Romania, but also Greece.
Criteria for the survey are four different indicators:
– the relative income poverty, i.e. if when income falls below 60% of the middle income
– the subjective income poverty (self-assessment)
– the so-called deprivation (low standard of living)
-the financial strain, which indicates how well households cope with their income.
Particularly affected by poverty are mostly people without work, single parents and foreigners. An important starting point for combating poverty, according to the IW researchers, are therefore labor market policies.
Full report here in PDF (German)