The Namibia Household Income and Expenditure Survey (NHIES) for 2009/10 has shown an improvement in many development areas including poverty reduction in the country as compared to the previous survey.
This is despite the fact that many Namibians still languish in abject poverty with unemployment in the country remaining alarmingly high at about 52%.
In the survey that was launched last week, the statistician-general, John Steytler noted that a detailed comparative poverty report that will be compared with the current report as well as the 2003/04 one, will be produced in the near future.
The previous survey was done for the 1993/94 fiscal year.
The survey report is expected to contribute to research and development policies; assist in the monitoring and evaluation of development processess; provide statistical infrastructure and provide information for the determination of poverty lines and production of poverty profiles.
“It is our belief that the survey results offer policy-makers a wide range of policy options and improve the data availability in the country,” said the statistician-general.
Meanwhile, the chief statistician at the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) Ngaingonekua Uamburu said Namibia’s inflation rate currently stands at 6% while its economic growth has plunged from 7.6% to a sluggish 3.6%.
Uamburu said that the plunging economic situation is due to the fact that the agriculture and fishing sectors have failed to record any growth over the last quarter.
Other sectors that have also declined are the mining and quarrying sectors that have declined with 8.9% while the macufactoring sector has registered a 3.6% decline.
Contributing to the inflation rate are price increases for commodities such as food and non-alcoholic beverages at 2.3% while alcholic beverages, tobacco, housing, water, electricity and other fuels have climbed to 1.4%.
Meanwhile, the transport and communication sectors have grown by 13.2% while the wholesale and retail industries have managed to record a 9.4% growth.
On the other hand, according to the NHIES, the highest income earning group in the country is the German-speaking while the Khoisan households are the lowest earners.
Such income are mainly drawn from sources such as salaries and wages as cited by 49% of the responding households, followed by subsistence farming (23%) while pensions and business income serves nine to 11%.
The report further states that 20% of the 10 645 households that responded live in improvised housing such as shacks and/or other humble dwellings.
According to the survey, Ohangwena Region has the highest unemployment rate while the Erongo Region is the least impoverished region and the high income earners live in the Khomas Region.
Outlets (650) from eight localities were covered to capture the data for this report based on the 1994/3 Housing Index when the population stood at 1.8 million.