Almost a quarter (23.6%) of all self-employed people aged 18 and over in the EU are at risk of poverty and social exclusion, although that ratio is less than half in Cyprus.
Compared with 2020 and looking at activity status, this was the only category that experienced a deterioration in the poverty situation, increasing from 22.6% to 23.6%, according to data released by Eurostat.
In Cyprus in 2021, 9.5% of the self-employed were at risk of poverty and social exclusion, which increased compared to 8.1% in 2020.
At the same time, Cyprus had the EU’s third lowest percentage of self-employed at risk.
From 2020 to 2021, at risk of poverty or social exclusion rates in the EU decreased for the unemployed, pensioners and employees by 1.6 (from 66.1% to 64.5%), 0.6 (from 19.2% to 18.6%) and 0.3 percentage points (from 9.4% to 9.1%), respectively.
In Cyprus, there was a reduction in the percentage of those at risk for the unemployed (from 55% to 51.6%, 3.4 percentage points lower), pensioners (from 23.3% to 20.5%, 2.8 percentage points lower), and employees (from 8.7% to 8.3%, 0.4 percentage points lower).
At the national level, in 2021, Romania, Portugal and Estonia recorded the highest shares of self-employed people at risk of poverty and social exclusion (70.8%, 32.4% and 32.2%).
Romania, in particular, experienced the highest yearly increase of 5.1 percentage points.
In contrast, the poverty situation for the self-employed improved in 11 countries, with Ireland and Hungary reporting the highest decrease in such rates from 2020 to 2021 (3.2 and 3.7 percentage points lower, respectively).