Living Wages in Botswana - October 2017 - Per month in Pula

The Living Wage is based on the concept that work should provide an adequate income to cover the necessary living costs of a family. WageIndicator uses prices from the Cost of Living Survey to calculate Living Wage for 60 countries. The Living Wage is an approximate income needed to meet a family’s basic needs including food, housing, transport, health, education, tax deductions and other necessities.

The following table summarises the varying expenditure and income needs for the three commonly occurring family household compositions.

Expenditure and Living Wage calculation (monthly rates in Pula)

  Typical family   Standard family   Single-adult  
  from to from to from to
Food 3920 5160 3200 4210 800 1060
Housing 2500 2500 2500 2500 1010 1280
Transport 140 160 140 160 70 80
Health 200 500 200 500 50 125
Education 500 1000 500 1000 0 0
Other costs 365 465 325 420 96 125
Total Expenditure 7625 9785 6865 8790 2026 2670
Net Living Wage 4013 5150 3814 4883 2026 2670
Gross Living Wage 4420 5670 4200 5370 2230 2940

Note: For more details see Living Wage FAQ.


Family Living Wages (monthly rates in Pula)

There is not a single answer to what is the adequate cost of living. The result is complex, as the cost of living varies by household composition, location, and employment pattern. The following table presents the Living Wage estimates for a set of most common family household compositions and under different assumptions about working hours.

  from to
Typical family (two parents + 2.9 children, 1.9 working) 4420 5670
Standard family (two parents + 2 children, 1.8 working) 4200 5370
Two parents and two children, 2 working 3780 4840
Two parents and two children, 1.5 working 5040 6450
Two parents and two children, 1 working 7550 9670
Two parents and three children, 1.9 working 4460 5730
Two parents and four children, 1.9 working 4950 6370
Single-adult without children, 1 working 2230 2940

Note: Results in the table are rounded.


Living Wages in Context (monthly rates in Pula)

The Minimum Wage is a national legally binding obligation on employers which often make no reference to a living standard. Living Wage describes the adequate living standard. The common goal of the many living wage campaigns currently taking place all over the world is to lift Minimum Wages levels to those of the Living Wages. WageIndicator presents Living Wages jointly with Minimum Wages, aiming to raise awareness concerning the remaining differences in levels. Living Wages are presented in context with other wage indicators including prevailing wages of workers over recent years.

  2014 . 2015 . 2016 . 2017 .
  from to from to from to from to
Minimum wage 500 500 500 500 561 620 620 620
Living Wage - Single Adult . . . . . . 2230 2940
Living Wage - Typical Family . . . . . . 4420 5670
Real wage of low-skilled worker . . . . . . . .
Real wage of medium-skilled worker . . . . . . . .
Real wage of high-skilled worker . . . . . . . .

Note: Table shows the lowest monthly Minimum Wage in a country, when available. Reported monthly earnings of workers in low-, medium-, and high-skilled occupations are obtained from the voluntary WageIndicator web survey on work and wages. Results in the table are rounded.



Food basket and food prices in Pula

The food expenditure is the main component of Living Wage and it is determined by the price of food basket. The food prices are taken from WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey which collects the actual prices of all items necessary to calculate the Living Wage. The composition of the food basket is taken from the national food balance sheets published by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The food basket is scaled to 2,100 calories per person per day that is the nutritional requirement for good health proposed by World Bank (Handbook on poverty and inequality, 2009).

Food item Grams per day Energy (kcal) Price per kilo from to
Wheat, barley and cereals 174 534 17.9 30
Rice 18 65 29 42
Meat (beef, pork, poultry) 85 111 35 39
Oils (soyabean, olive, palm) 7 60 . .
Sugar (Raw Equivalent) 66 234 17.5 25
Maize and products 100 317 25 25
Milk - Excluding Butter 306 194 12 15
Vegetables, Other 86 26 12 20.5
Potatoes and products 33 23 15 15
Butter, Ghee 5 37 35 35
Groundnuts (Shelled Eq) 3 11 50 50
Pulses, Other and products 5 15 25 25
Cassava and products 0 0 2 2
Egg (price per 10 eggs) 5 7 16.7 16.7
Sunflowerseed Oil 23 199 . .
Fish products 10 8 50 150
Beer 97 47 16 24
Sweeteners, Other 15 35 25 25
Beans 9 31 20 20
Sweet potatoes 1 1 30 30
Bananas 2 1 12 20
Soyabeans 3 10 20 20
Apples and products 14 5 17 29
Tomatoes and products 7 1 25 25
Onions 7 3 18 20
Oranges, Mandarines 32 6 . .
Plantains 8 6 25 25
Peas 1 2 30 30
Roots, Other 113 102 20 20
Seeds and kernels 0 0 50 60
Wine 7 5 160 160
Cream 0 1 25 90
Olives (including preserved) 0 0 80 80
Citrus, Other 0 0 20 20
Lemons, Limes and products 7 1 20 20
Tea (including mate) 3 1 48 48
Grapefruit and products 0 0 20 20
Coffee and products 2 1 40 50

WageIndicator Living Wage background:

The WageIndicator Living Wage is set to provide acceptable living standard to a family of a particular size. WageIndicator presents Living Wages for several household types and working hours which reflect the most frequently found real situations in which people have to make a living: 1. Typical family Living Wage is a baseline estimate that respects the country specific conditions. Typical family is comprised of two adults and the number of children is given by country specific fertility rate (the average number of children a woman is expected to have during her lifespan). One adult is working full-time and the working hours of second adult are approximated by national employment rate. The total income earned by two adults paid living wage is sufficient to reach adequate living standard. 2. Standard family Living Wage is estimated for a family composed of two adults and two children (referred to as family 2+2). Living wage is calculated under different assumptions about working hours. These include that both adults work full-time (family employment rate is 2), or at least one adult works part-time or half-time (family employment rate is 1.8 and 1.5), or one adult does not work at all (i.e. patriarchal model with family employment 1). Alternatives refer to trade-offs between leisure and work and define what living wage represents. In every case the total income earned by two adults paid living wage is sufficient to reach adequate living standard. 3. Extended family Living Wage includes family with three or four children. One adult works full-time and the work intensity of second parent is approximated by national employment rate. 4. Individual Living Wage represents an acceptable standard of living for a single individual working full-time.

Data sources: WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey, World Bank Databank Fertility rate 2010-2014, ILO Estimated participation rate in 2017, FAO Food balance sheet in 2013.

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