Can a family of 5 build a comfortable life on P10k per month (or P2,500 weekly)?
Did the NEDA really say a family of five can survive and live decently on P10,000 a month? Read on to find out.
When the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) was reported to have claimed a monthly budget of P10k was enough of a monthly budget for a Filipino family of 5, many raised their eyebrows, which wasn’t surprising. Comments on social media ranged from those of criticism to downright frustration. According to many, they lost sight of other expenses, tuition fee and even how many are paying off debts or loans.
Did they really miss the point? It turns out, there was more to it than what NEDA Undersecretary Rosemarie Edillon was quoted to have said in a press briefing.
To be clear, the figure Edillon presented wasn’t meant to be an exact budget for a Filipino family of 5.
According to a statement from NEDA, what they presented was simply a hypothetical value. They did this to illustrate how “a hypothetical budget would be affected by the 4.8% inflation rate.”
Simply put, the inflation rate is the measurement of the price hike of goods and services.
P10,000 monthly isn’t enough for a family to live a comfortable life. At least, that’s not what NEDA meant.
Here’s the sample computation they presented:
Of the sample budget, NEDA allotted 3,834 for food and non-alcoholic beverages. This includes rice, meat, fish, and vegetables. They also set an amount for alcoholic beverages and tobacco, at P158.
“This is based on an average Filipino family na ang basehan namin is ang family expenditures and income survey. So it’s based on a nationally-based representative survey,” Edillon said during the briefing, when asked how they came up with the figures. It was alo pointed out during the briefing that many minimum wage workers are deep in debt.
The Philippine Statistics Authority Report in 2015 stated that an average Filipino family of 5 needed “at least P6,365 on average monthly” in order to meet the family’s basic food needs. As for non-food needs, it brings this amount up to P9,140.
What’s more, an average Filipino family, in order to get out of poverty, needs an additional amount of about P2,649 each month.
It’s no secret that the average Filipino family has to work doubly hard to be able to earn, provide, and even save. We pride ourselves in resilience and resourcefulness.
With the rising costs and for many, possible debt, it becomes even more challenging. So the criticism against this NEDA statement is not surprising.
It’s hard enough providing for one child, let alone three. It takes sacrifice and diligence to be able not just to survive, but to thrive.
We can handle anything! Right, moms and dads? But there is more to life than just making a living. We need to time to rest, pursue hobbies, and enjoy self-care. If this is what it takes to live comfortably, then P10,000 is surely not enough.
How much do you think a budget for a Filipino family of 5 should be monthly, moms and dads? Let us know in the comments below.