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cities & citizens series - bridging the urban divide

MAP 2: Household income distribution in MSP showing concentration of wealth in the centre Map courtesy of The Centre for the Study of Violence - University of São Paulo (NEV/USP) www.nevusp.org

which produces 47.2 per cent of the state GDP, followed by the industrial sector, at 46.3 per cent. Recent studies indicate that a significant proportion of services are in fact services directly related to industrial production. These findings make the interpretations of deindustrialization in the MRSP more relative than absolute. Agriculture represents just 6.5 per cent of GDP, according to the government 2004 statistics. São Paulo’s industrial sector predominantly produces vehicles, airplanes, helicopters, telecommunications equipment,

The reality of stark income inequalities in cities like São Paulo should not automatically conjure images of extreme poverty and an absence of basic services. textiles, processed food, sugar and alcohol fuel, and large quantities of orange juice, all for domestic and international markets. Sugar cane and coffee production remain active and important sectors. Organized labour has achieved considerable gains since the late 1970s, reflecting both the power of the

unions and the rising minimum wage level. With São Paulo state accounting for 33.9 per cent of the nation’s economy, its attractiveness to those living elsewhere and to potential economic migrants, is compelling. Despite the higher-than-national-average earning potential in São Paulo and its interregional advantages within Brazil (and Latin America), however, the level of income inequality in the state remains high. Gini coefficients are primarily based on income, therefore the MRSP Gini level of 0.56 directly reveals large income disparities among different social groups within the city.

The minimum salary impact Income levels in Brazil are measured in absolute terms as well by quantities of the minimum salary (MS). Brazilian states can set higher minimum wages, which may vary in different economic sectors. Each increase in the minimum wage results in a significant burden on the federal budget, because the minimum wage is tied to social security benefits, including pensions and other government programmes and salaries. Despite rela-

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Sao Paulo; A tale of two cities  

UN-HABITAT’s new Cities and Citizens series examines urban inequality in the developing world through in-depth analysis of intracity data de...

Sao Paulo; A tale of two cities  

UN-HABITAT’s new Cities and Citizens series examines urban inequality in the developing world through in-depth analysis of intracity data de...

Profile for unhabitat
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