Regional income inequality in Egypt: evolution and implications for Sustainable Development Goal 10

Francesco Savoia, Ioannis Bournakis, Mona Said, Antonio Savoia


Research on income inequality in developing economies has scarcely looked at the regional dimension. This is important, as progress in reducing income inequality at national level can only be partially successful if in a country very unequal regions coexist alongside relatively equal ones. This paper contributes to filling this gap. Using newly assembled Luxemburg Income Study data, we investigate the evolution of income inequality within Egyptian regions during 1999–2015. The analysis offers three findings. First, income inequality has generally increased. Second, regional differences in income inequality have tended to reduce, but less unequal regions are converging to similar levels of inequality to those in more unequal regions. Third, there has been a decrease in the income share of the bottom 40% and an increase in the proportion of people living below 50% of median income. Hence, geographically diffused progress on the first two targets of SDG 10 depends on reversing these trends.


Income distribution, convergence, regional disparities, SDG 10, Sustainable Development Goals, inequality, decomposition

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