Child poverty in Cyprus has increased slightly since incomes from employment and capital began to fall with the emergence of the financial crisis, according to a study by the Economic Research Centre of the University of Cyprus.
The data released yesterday showed that the child poverty rate in 2013 reached 13.9% compared to 13.1% in 2009 with single parent families facing the highest risk of poverty.
"Child poverty varies across age groups, with single parent families continuing to face the highest risk and intensity of poverty.
"High and rising poverty also occurs among families with children in the 12 to 17 age group and families with a large number of children."
According to the study, while the distribution of poverty appears to vary considerably across population groups, families with the youngest child groups are the least affected.
"This is because the cost of children rises with age, a fact reflected in the equivalence scales which statistically treat children above 14 years old as adults."
Poverty is also positively associated with the number of children in the family, the study showed.
"This is a common pattern in most European countries, reflecting the fact that children add to family needs but do not add to family income."
Following a new single parent benefit introduced in 2012 child poverty rates in single families improved slightly between 2009 and 2013 but the group continues to remain at the highest risk of poverty.
Despite the slight increase, child poverty rates in Cyprus remain lower than the EU average.
"Child poverty in Cyprus fluctuated between 12% and 13% during the last decade. This level stands lower than the overall rate in the population and below the levels of most European states."
The study was based on information obtained from the 2009 Cyprus Household Budget Survey provided by the Statistical Service of Cyprus.
According to the Research Centre, it covered households in government controlled areas and used a sampling fraction of 1/100 (2,707 households/7,976 individuals).