Causes of Poverty in Monaco

What are the causes of poverty in Monaco? This is a difficult question to answer. As of 2009, according to the World Health Organization, Monaco does not have any percentage of its population living below the national or international poverty line. So, there are essentially no causes of poverty in Monaco.

Monaco, a microstate located on France‘s southern coast, has a small population of 38,000 people. In 2015, Monaco had the highest per capita GDP in the world. Thus, it is not surprising that Monaco is home to some of the world’s wealthiest people and many popular, expensive tourist attractions such as Monte Carlo.

Furthermore, the cost of living is extremely high in Monaco; property costs $9,000 per square inch, which is approximately 50% more expensive than the average apartment in New York City. Monaco is roughly the size of Central Park, and so it is fairly difficult for a large number of people of low socioeconomic status to find a place to live.

In addition, the working class of Monaco is hardly even comparable to the working class of many developed countries like the United States. Workers are granted competitive, tax-free salaries and they do not suffer the same hardships and difficulties that part-time, minimum wage workers in the United States face.

Health outcomes are oftentimes linked to poverty rates and may provide meaningful insight into a country’s poverty rate. Underdeveloped countries, which experience higher incidence rates of communicable diseases, have higher poverty rates than developed countries like Monaco, which experience high incidence rates of non-communicable diseases. Infectious, communicable diseases that are oftentimes rampant among groups of low socioeconomic status do not have high incidence rates in Monaco.

For instance, diarrhea, which is a common indicator of infectious disease rates, was reported to have an incidence rate of 0.3 in 2009, which is comparable to the world’s lowest incidence rate of diarrhea of 0.2 at that time. Cardiovascular disease is an example of a non-communicable disease that has a fairly high incidence rate in developed countries. In Monaco, cardiovascular disease had an incidence rate of 2.1 in 2009, compared to the world’s lowest incidence rate of cardiovascular disease, 1.4, at that time.

Monaco’s health outcomes are comparable to those of developed countries rather than underdeveloped countries. These facts, combined with the protections for worker salaries and the many wealthy people that live there, mean that poverty is fortunately not an issue for the people of Monaco.

Emily Santora

Photo: Flickr