Pakistan’s 4,000 half-a-million-dollars-a-year families

February 9, 2015 Comments Off on Pakistan’s 4,000 half-a-million-dollars-a-year families
Pakistan’s 4,000 half-a-million-dollars-a-year families

Shahid Javed Burki

Shahid Javed Burki, former finance minister of Pakistan, is the chief officer of EMP FinancialAdvisors,LLC.  He served at the World Bank for 25 year in various capacities. Burki writes an opinion piece for a Pakistani newspaper (Dawn) once a week. He is also a frequent contributor of opinion pieces to the Daily Times.

Burki is Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Institute of Public Policy in Lahore, Pakistan.

Below is an extract from his article on Pakistan’s Economy:

Using the WB data on inequality in Pakistan, which provides distribution according to quintiles, I have determined the share in national income of the top 10 per cent, top one per cent, top 0.1 per cent and top 0.01 per cent of the population. I have assumed that the distribution of income noted by the Bank is replicated as we move up the income scale. If this assumption is correct, then it appears that in Pakistan’s case, nearly 4,000 households have more than half a per cent of the total national income. In dollar terms, this translates into roughly half a million dollars a year per household. For the bottom 10 per cent, per household income is $2,900 a year. The rich households, therefore, are 175 times richer than poor households. These numbers give some substance to the differences in patterns of consumption that we see in Pakistan’s large cities. What the super-rich spend on the marriages of their children and how the poor manage their existence is one example of this glaring inequality. This is one way of looking at the durability of the Imran Khan phenomenon.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 24th, 2014

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