Turkey's poverty threshold increased to 31,241 Turkish Liras in March 2023 nearly four times the minimum wage (8,506 liras), data from the Confederation of Turkish Trade Unions (Türk-İş) showed.
The poverty line represents the amount required to feed a family of four adequately and healthfully, as well as to compensate for other essentials including clothing, rent, energy, water, transportation, education, and healthcare.
The hunger threshold, the amount of money needed to prevent a four-person family from being starved for an entire month, rose to 9,591 liras in March. Even after the increase imposed upon the minimum wage by the government at the beginning of 2023, the hunger threshold surpassed the minimum wage in March as it did in February.
Furthermore, the monthly cost of living of a single employee was 12,459 liras in March.
According to the survey of Türk-İş, food prices rose by 1,76 percent on a monthly basis and 94,62 percent on an annual basis in March. The two-month rate of change in food inflation was 17.96 percent whereas the twelve-month rate of change was 94.62 percent.
The report also stated that 20 percent of the farm animals (goat, sheep, lamb) in the country was in the earthquake zone and some of them perished in the quakes that occurred in February. This might affect the prices of meat and dairy products, the report noted.
Former chief economist of the Central Bank of Turkey, Hakan Kara, shared a graph showing the hunger threshold and minimum wage since 2019.
Enflasyonist ortamda maaşınıza zam gelse dahi sevinemezsiniz çünkü enflasyonun alım gücünü hızla eriteceğini bilirsiniz.— Hakan Kara (@ali_hakan_kara) March 29, 2023
(Biri size "vatandaşı enflasyona karşı ezdirmedik" derse bu grafiği gösterebilirsiniz.) pic.twitter.com/lYdGgwYaCb
The government-run Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) reported an annual inflation rate of 55.18 percent in February, whereas the independent inflation group ENAG put the figure at 126.91 percent.