Living Wage Series - Pakistan - September 2019 - In Pakistan Rupee, per Month

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 in more than 70 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 PKR)

  Typical family Standard family Single-adult
  from-to from-to from-to
Food expenses 16400-19300 11900-14000 2980-3510
Housing expenses 14900-21300 14900-21300 7060-10500
Transport expenses 1200-2000 1200-2000 600-1000
Healthcare expenses 600-1000 600-1000 150-250
Education expenses 500-1000 500-1000 0
Other expenses 1680-2230 1460-1970 540-765
Total Expenditure 35280-46830 30560-41270 11330-16025
Net Living Wage 23520-31220 16978-22928 11330-16025
Gross Living Wage 25600-34000 18500-25000 12400-17500

Note: For more details see Living Wage FAQ.


Family Living Wages (monthly rates in PKR)

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.

Typical family (two parents + 3.5 children, 1.5 working) 25600-34000
Standard family (two parents + 2 children, 1.8 working) 18500-25000
Two parents and two children, 2 working 16700-22500
Two parents and two children, 1.5 working 22200-30000
Two parents and two children, 1 working 33300-45000
Two parents and three children, 1.5 working 24500-32700
Two parents and four children, 1.5 working 26800-35400
Single-adult without children, 1 working 12400-17500

Note: Results in the table are rounded.


Living Wages in Context (monthly rates in PKR)

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.

  2016 2017 2018 2019
Minimum wage 10000 14000 15000 16200
Living Wage - Single Adult 10600-13300 11200-15200 12400-17500 12400-17500
Living Wage - Typical Family 23200-29600 24000-31100 25600-34100 25600-34000
Real wage of low-skilled worker 18400-26700 20000-31500 21100-29500 21900-32000
Real wage of medium-skilled worker 19100-27700 21000-33300 22200-31200 23500-34600
Real wage of high-skilled worker 28100-44300 31000-53000 33300-50700 33800-53400

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 PKR

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
Wheat, barley and cereals products 276 802 80-100
Rice 29 109 80-110
Meat (beef, pork, poultry) 44 67 284-350
Oils (soyabean, olive, palm) 27 213 125-130
Sugar (Raw Equivalent) 111 248 58-60
Maize and products 35 113 -
Milk - Excluding Butter 440 281 90-100
Vegetables, Other 32 8 35-48
Potatoes and products 37 25 25-30
Butter, Ghee 12 103 100-110
Groundnuts (Shelled Eq) 3 6 140-150
Pulses, Other and products 11 37 100-130
Cassava and products 0 0 50-100
Egg (price per 10 eggs) 7 10 75-83
Sunflowerseed Oil 2 17 160-165
Fish products 5 4 350-500
Beer (0.5 liter/pint) 0 0 270-303
Sweeteners, Other 0 1 60-60
Beans 2 9 120-125
Sweet potatoes 0 0 25-50
Bananas 0 0 50-70
Apples and products 7 4 80-135
Tomatoes and products 11 2 50-80
Onions 20 9 40-50
Oranges, Mandarines 21 6 60-80
Peas 3 10 140-200
Roots, Other 6 6 30-35
Seeds and kernels 0 0 100-260
Wine (bottle) 0 0 267-400
Cream 0 0 110-280
Olives (including preserved) 4 11 -
Honey 0 0 650-650
Lemons, Limes and products 1 0 80-150
Tea (including mate) 2 1 700-730
Grapefruit and products 0 0 120-200
Coffee and products 0 0 2800-2920


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.

WageIndicator useful links:

Publication Guzi, M., & Kahanec, M. (2019). Estimating Living Wage Globally. Amsterdam, WageIndicator Foundation
WageIndicator Wages in Context Map with the latest updates
All You Always wanted to Know about Living Wages