17% of Pakistan’s population is engaged in the informal labor sector, Making Up To Rs. 2.6 Trillion Yearly

In the rural areas, the number of home workers is lower as compared to urban areas.

The practice of hiring maids for housework has been a part of Pakistan’s culture for ages. Thirty-six million households are served by a massive community of thirty-six million homeworkers.

Here’s the math:

According to 2019 estimate data, Pakistan has a population of 217 million, with an average of 6 members in every household. Therefore, the total number of households equals 36 million.

A team of 3 helping hands (maids) is engaged in household chores (dusting & cleaning, washing dishes, washing/ironing linen, etc.) daily. These 3 people serve 36 million households daily, covering 3 daily. In other words, 12 million homes are served by a set of 3 people daily across the country.

The total number of these helping hands is, therefore: 3 x 12 = 36 million. According to these numbers, 17% of Pakistan’s population is engaged in the informal labor sector – house workers.

Urban Vs. Rural areas

The number of house workers is higher in urban areas. In these areas, alongside cleaning and laundry work, workers are also hired as drivers, guards (chowkidar), gardeners, cooks, etc.

In the rural areas, the number of home workers is lower as compared to urban areas.

Pakistanis take care of this Huge Community of Workers

Unlike international countries, where there are unemployment and health coverage for such workers as part of their employment contract, Pakistanis take care of the help they hire in the absence of a contract. The community provides its maids and workers the safety net of a “guaranteed job” and pays them good salaries without tax withholding and deductions.

According to sources, the unemployment rate of this worker community is near to zero, with medium to high mobility between jobs. Moreover, the rising demand for this help keeps raising the wages of these home workers.

How is this community financially and economically?

Approximately each house worker takes home a monthly wage of Rs. 6,000 per household served. Considering there are 36 million households, the community of maids makes 216 billion Pakistani rupees every month. Yearly, that amounts to 2.6 trillion Pakistani rupees.

This informal economy of employees is lubricating the country’s overall economy with daily wage labor work. This community is generally classed as belonging to the low-income group. However, since the society assures their revenue stream (regular wages) because of their never-ending desire for help, this community becomes a massive part of Pakistan’s consumer base.

For the local and multinational companies (especially FMCGs), this community is money in the bank, considering the social dynamics and spending habits. This Pakistani community of maids and workers is one commodity that advanced economies of other nations don’t have.

What are your thoughts on this? Please share with us in the comment section below.


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