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Overview of Trends of Economic Inequality in Mauritius


Has the dispersion of earnings been increasing in recent decades?No evidence.
Has overall inequality increased in recent years?Yes, the Gini coefficient increased by 4 percentage points since 2001 after a period of sustained reduction in inequality.
Have there been periods when overall inequality fell for a sustained period?Yes, the Gini coefficient fell by 13 percentage points between 1962 and 1991.
Has poverty been falling or rising in recent decades?Insufficient evidence.
Has there been a U-pattern for top income shares over time?Yes, top gross income shares were falling from mid-1970s to mid-1990s and rising in the most recent decade.
Has the distribution of wealth followed the same pattern as income?No evidence.
Additional noteworthy features

Sources and References

Sources for the historical data series:

Overall inequality: Gini coefficient for monthly household disposable income (not equivalised) from report on Household Budget Survey (HBS) 2012, Table 3, report on HBS 2006/07, Table 3, and report on HBS 2001/02, Table 5, linked to earlier series for 1975 to 1991 from WIID, and figure for 1962 given by Subramanian (2001, page 2).

Top income shares: Shares of top 1 and 0.1 per cent in total gross income from WTID, based on work of Atkinson (2011).

Poverty: Proportion of households with equivalised income below 50 per cent of the median from report on Household Budget Survey (HBS) 2012, Table 7 and report on HBS 2006/07, Table 7.

Individual Earnings: To the best of our knowledge no data on earnings decile ratio are available for Mauritius.

Wealth: To the best of our knowledge no data on wealth distribution are available for Mauritius.


  • Atkinson, A B, 2011, “Top incomes in Mauritius: A 75 year history”, working paper.
  • Subramanian, A, 2001, “Mauritius: A case study”, Finance and Development, vol 38: 1-7.