Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Central Statistics Agency (BPS) recorded that the number of poor in September 2019 had totaled 24.79 million, plunging 0.44 percent as compared to 25.67 million people recorded during the corresponding period in 2018.

"In comparison with March 2019, the population of poor fell by 358.9 thousand people, and as compared to September 2019, it decreased by 888.7 thousand people," BPS Head Suhariyanto noted in Jakarta on Wednesday.

On account of that reduction, the percentage of poor people in September 2019 had reached 9.22 percent, down as compared to 9.66 percent in September 2018.

The BPS has recorded poverty rates twice a year, specifically in March and September.

Suhariyanto pointed to several factors, including an increase in the average nominal wage of farm workers per day in September 2019, that played an influential role in reducing the poor population in the country.

The increase in wages of farm laborers had reached 1.02 percent as compared to that in March 2019, from Rp53,873 to Rp54,424.

Furthermore, the average nominal wage of construction workers per day in September 2019 also increased 0.49 percent as compared to March 2019, from Rp88,673 to Rp89,072.

He remarked that the general inflation rate was also relatively low, at 1.84 percent, during the March-September 2019 period.

In addition to inflation, the farmer exchange rate (NTP) in September 2019 was above 100, reaching 103.88.

The decline in the population of poor was also spurred by falling retail prices on several staple commodities, including rice, down 1.75 percent; chicken meat, 2.07 percent; cooking oil, 1.59 percent; eggs, 0.12 percent; and mackerel, 0.03 percent.

Moreover, there was an increase in the coverage of recipients of non-cash food aid programs realized in the third quarter of 2019, reaching 509 districts and cities, or an increase of 289 districts and cities than the first quarter of 2019.

Meanwhile, the percentage of poor people is still the highest in Maluku and Papua, at 20.39 percent, or reaching 1.5 million people; followed by Bali and Nusa Tenggara, 13.36 percent, or 1.99 million people; and Sulawesi, 10.07 percent, or reaching 1.98 million.

However, the number of poor people in Java reached 12.5 million people, or 8.29 percent. Related news: Social Affairs Ministry to cut poverty rate to below nine percent
Related news: Indonesians living below poverty line smaller in number


Translator: Dewa Ketut, Azis Kurmala
Editor: Suharto
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