OECD data on relative child poverty (see Figure 7) allow for some comparison between EU Member States and non-EU G20 countries. Most EU countries have relative child poverty rates below non-EU G20 countries, such as (in increasing order) Russia, Mexico, the United States, India, Turkey, Brazil, South Africa, and China, ranging from 19.6 % for Russia to 33.1 % for China. The United States is one of the advanced G20 economies where relative child poverty is significant: 14.4 % of children in the country live below the US official poverty threshold. According to a Brookings Institute scientist, ‘The share of children who live in poverty [in the US] is 14.4 %, which is higher than the share of adults age 18 to 64 (9.4 %) and higher than the share of those 65 and over (8.9 %) who live in poverty. This is a dramatic reversal from the mid-twentieth century, when elderly poverty rates were the highest in the country’. The reason for this disparity is that children in the US do not receive the kind of social security benefits that the elderly do (see also the last paragraph of Chapter 2.2.3.).
Figure 7 – Age-related relative poverty in OECD countries and G20 countries
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