Self-employed in trade, transport and hospitality at great risk of poverty
Self-employed persons working in the trade, transport and hospitality sectors were at great risk of poverty even before the coronavirus hit those sectors especially hard, according to Statistics Netherlands.
In 2018 a total of 1.7 million people were self-employed persons working in the above mentioned sectors. 25 thousand of them did not make enough to make ends meet - their income fell below the poverty line, according to the stats office.
Self-employed persons who work in culture, recreation and other services also ran a high risk of poverty. These include cafe owners, taxi drivers, hairdressers - all businesses that were hard hit by the coronavirus and its accompanying lockdowns.
"The corona blow falls in the corner of people who are already having a hard time," Statistics Netherlands economist Peter Hein van Mulligen said to RTL Nieuws. "All people who work in sectors where margins are not that high and incomes are low. It is precisely those vulnerable sectors that are now hit hard by the corona crisis."
In 2019, just over 1 million Netherlands residents, or 6.2 percent of the population, lived in a household where the income was below the poverty line - a very slight decrease compared to the 6.3 percent of 2018 and 2017.
The poverty line in 2019 was 1,090 euros net per month for a single person, 1,530 euros for a couple without children, 2,080 euros for a couple with two minor children, and 1,660 euros for a single parent with two minor children.