Does productive safety net programme contribute to reduce households’ poverty? Evidence from Rural Tigrai, Ethiopia

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Yibrah Hagos Gebresilassie (PhD)


This paper evaluated the impact of productive safety net programme on households' poverty
reduction in Tigrai, Ethiopia, using primary data collected from 650 households in 2019. A
propensity score matching, Foster-Greer-Thorbecke, and Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition
techniques were employed to analyse data. Using the total poverty line, the poverty rate was
lower for programme beneficiaries (27 percent) than non-beneficiaries (30 percent). The poverty
rate for female-headed households was higher (32 percent) than male-headed households (25
percent). Households administered under Relief Society of Tigrai (REST) experienced lowered
poverty rate (26 percent) than households administered under government (31 percent). Total
consumption per adult equivalent for REST administered households was three times higher than
government-administered households. Furthermore, a decomposition analysis revealed that
livestock holding, father's education, off-farm income, access to irrigation, farm size, and type of
rural productive safety net programme (REST) explained gender gaps by 34, 29, 28, 24, 18, and
13 percent, respectively while dependency ratio, mother's education widened gender poverty
gaps by 26 and 22 percent, respectively. Thus, productive safety net programme played a
significant role in reducing households' poverty and able to reach the poorest households.
Hence, to reduce the overall poverty level of the region as well as the country, due attention has
to be given to reducing gender disparity in poverty and sustained effort is needed to
government-administered productive safety net programme districts (woredas) to accelerate the
rate of poverty reduction.

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Author Biography

Yibrah Hagos Gebresilassie (PhD), Adigrat University, Ethiopia

College of Business and Economics