El Salvador government report on well-being of the population

The government of El Salvador released at the end of March its annual Multi-purpose Household Survey ("EHPM" for its initials in Spanish) for 2022.   Here are some of the statistics contained in this year's report regarding the people of El Salvador. 

According to the estimates in the 2022 EHPM, the population of the country is 6.33 million people:  

  • 53.3% of the population is female
  • 61.7% of the population lives in urban areas
  • 30.7% of the population is younger than 20
  • 27.4% of the population lives in the department of San Salvador
  • 24.7% of young people between the ages of 15-29 are not in school or employed.

The percentage of the population living in poverty in 2022 was 26.6%, while the percentage living in extreme poverty was 8.6%.  This was an increase in poverty rates compared to 2021, and was primarily due to inflation increasing the cost of that basic basket of goods which defines the poverty level in the country while household earnings were not keeping pace.

Data on household finances in El Salvador:

  • Average monthly household income on a national level was $629.38 in 2022, while the average individual monthly earnings were $378.
  • The official unemployment rate was 5%, counting all types of jobs from informal street vendor to bank executive. But of the people counted as "employed", only 44.8% have a full-time job with an employer paying a regular salary.  
  • Only 25.7% have medical insurance, largely through the government social security system,

There has been little to no improvement in most of these figures since Nayib Bukele took office.   Now that the pandemic is past and the government proclaims itself the safest place in the Americas, El Salvador needs to see an economy which performs better for the vast majority of its citizens.