PakAlumni Worldwide: The Global Social Network

The Global Social Network

Rising Disposable Incomes and Economic Mobility in Pakistan

A 2012 study of 22 nations conducted by Prof Miles Corak for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and
Development (OECD) has found income
heritability to be greater in the United States, the United Kingdom, Italy, China and 5 other countries than in Pakistan.

The study's findings, presented by the author in testimony to the US Senate Finance Committee on July 6, 2012, rely on the computation of "inter-generational earnings elasticity" which the author explains as follows:

"(It) is the percentage difference in earnings in the child’s generation associated with the percentage difference in the parental generation. For example, an intergenerational elasticity in earnings of 0.6 tells us that if one father makes 100% more than another then the son of the high income father will, as an adult, earn 60% more than the son of the relatively lower income father. An elasticity of 0.2 says this 100% difference between the fathers would only lead to a 20% difference between the sons. A lower elasticity means a society with more mobility."

Intergenerational Mobility in Pakistan:

Corak calculates that the intergenerational earnings elasticity in Pakistan is 0.46, the same as in Switzerland. It means that a difference of 100%  between the incomes of a rich father and a poor father is reduced to 46% difference between their sons' incomes. Among the 22 countries studied, Peru, China and Brazil have the lowest economic mobility with inter-generational elasticity of 0.67, 0.60 and 0.58 respectively. The highest economic mobility is offered by Denmark (0.15), Norway (0.17) and Finland (0.18).

The author also looked at Gini coefficient of each country and found reasonably good correlation between Gini and intergenerational income elasticity.

 In addition to Corak, there are other reports which confirm that Pakistan has continued to offer  significant upward economic and social mobility
to its citizens over the last two decades. Since 1990, Pakistan's middle
class had expanded by 36.5% and India's by only 12.8%, according to an ADB report titled "Asia's Emerging Middle Class: Past, Present And ...

 More evidence of upward mobility is offered by recent Euromonitor market research indicating that Pakistanis are seeing rising disposable incomes. It says that there
were 1.8 million Pakistani households (7.55% of all households) and 7.9
million Indian households (3.61% of all households) in 2009 with
disposable incomes of $10,001 or more. This translates into 282% increase (vs 232% in India) from 1995-2009 in households with disposable incomes of $10,001 or more. Consumer spending in Pakistan has increased at a 26 percent average pace
the past three years, compared with 7.7 percent for Asia, according to Bloomberg.

Mobility Drivers:

The study identified three key drivers of inter-generational mobility: Family, Labor Market and State.

The biggest difference the family makes is in terms of education and training of the children. Growing labor market is important for the availability of better paying jobs, and the state matters because its policies influence access to education and growth of economic opportunities. For Pakistanis, the weakest link here has been the state which has failed to adequately fund education and facilitate economic growth through infrastructure investments. The private sector, the civil society and the international community have, however, stepped in to at least partially compensate for some of the most serious shortcomings of the state.   


Pakistani parents are taking education more and more seriously and enrolling their children at all levels. According to Harvard University researchers Robert Barro and Jhong-Wa Lee, Pakistan has been increasing enrollment of students in schools at a faster rate since 1990 than India. In 1990, there were 66.2% of Pakistanis vs
51.6% of Indians age 15 and above who had no schooling. In 2000, there were 60.2%
Pakistanis vs 43% Indians with no schooling. In 2010, Pakistan reduced
it to 38% vs India's 32.7%.

As of 2010, there are 380 (vs 327 Indians) out of every 1000
Pakistanis age 15 and above
who have never had any formal schooling. Of the remaining 620 (vs 673
Indians) who
enrolled in school, 22 (vs 20 Indians) dropped out before finishing
primary school, and
the remaining 598 (vs 653 Indians) completed it. There are 401 (vs 465
Indians) out of every 1000
Pakistanis who made it to secondary school. 290 (vs 69 Indians)
completed secondary school  while 111 (vs. 394 Indians) dropped out.
Only 55 (vs 58 Indians)  made it to college out of which 39 (vs 31
Indians) graduated with a degree.

Labor Market:

Pakistan's employment growth has been the highest in South Asia
region since 2000, followed by Nepal, Bangladesh, India, and Sri Lanka
in that order, according to a recent World Bank report titled "More and Better Jobs in South Asia".

employment in South Asia (excluding Afghanistan and Bhutan) rose from
473 million in 2000 to 568 million in 2010, creating an average of just
under 800,000 new jobs a month. In all countries except Maldives and Sri
Lanka, the largest share of the employed are the low‐end self-employed.

report says that nearly a third of workers in India and a fifth of
workers in Bangladesh and Pakistan are casual laborers. Regular wage and
salaried workers represent a fifth or less of total employment.

of the labor productivity data indicates that growth in TFP (total
factor productivity) made a larger relative contribution to the growth
of aggregate labor productivity in South Asia during 1980–2008 than did
physical and human capital accumulation. In fact, the contribution of
TFP growth was higher than in the high‐performing East Asian economies
excluding China.


The experience of OECD nations shows that construction of a large and vibrant middle class is an absolutely essential pre-requisite for a prosperous and democratic society.  In spite of all of its current difficulties, Pakistan's middle class is growing as evident from data coming from a variety of sources ranging from ADB and the World Bank to University researchers and Euromonitor consumer research firm.  More enlightened leadership in Islamabad can help accelerate this process by focusing greater attention to raising more revenue and increasing public investment in education, health care and infrastructure.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Economic Mobility Across Generations

Upward Social and Economic Mobility in Pakistan

Pakistan GDP Grossly Underestimated, Shares Highly Undervalued

Investment Analysts Bullish on Pakistan

Precise Estimates of Pakistan's Informal Economy

Pak Consumer Boom  Fuels Underground Economy

Rural Consumption Boom in Pakistan

Pakistan's Tax Evasion Fosters Aid Dependence

Poll Finds Pakistanis Happier Than Neighbors

Pakistan's Rural Economy Booming

Pakistan Car Sales Up 61%

Resilient Pakistan Defies Doomsayers

Land For Landless Women in Pakistan

Pakistan's Circular Debt and Load-shedding

Hypermart Pakistan

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Comment by Riaz Haq on November 26, 2012 at 5:09pm

Here's a BR report on new US Ambassador's thoughts about Pakistan:

In the brief few weeks that the new US ambassador Richard Olson has been in Pakistan, he is said to have been struck by the tremendous economic potential Pakistan possesses and by the industriousness and vitality of its people.

According to him, he has also been pleased to see the many ways in which the United States is working with Pakistan to harness this potential to create a brighter economic future for the people of Pakistan. Here are a few examples:

Boosting agricultural output: To generate jobs and higher incomes among the 45 percent of the population employed in agriculture, the United States helped train 14,000 Pakistani farmers to better protect their livestock from disease, improve the quality of their products, and achieve profitable growth. We're also helping to build new irrigation canals that will expand arable land by more than 200,000 acres.

Building roads for greater trade: To connect communities and facilitate trade, the United States is helping to build more than 1,000-km of roads in Fata, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, and Balochistan. The Peshawar-Torkham Highway reconstruction is also underway and it will connect Jamrud and Landikotal tehsils in Khyber Agency with the city of Peshawar to foster regional trade for years to come.

Helping businesses bloom: The United States is uniquely placed to support entrepreneurship in Pakistan because, as President Obama said, "innovation is what America has always been about." In September, we launched the Pakistan Private Investment Initiative, a private equity offering designed to help Pakistan's talented entrepreneurs access the capital they need to expand their businesses and create jobs. In October, we organised the "US-Pakistan Business Opportunities Conference" in London to bring together Pakistani and American businesses and bankers to identify new business opportunities.

Promoting trade and investment: The United States is Pakistan's largest export market. Two-way trade between our countries amounted to almost S6 billion in 2011. The US government wants to expand our trade and investment relationship with Pakistan and so do US investors who are attracted to this country's market of 180 million people.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 29, 2012 at 5:24pm

Here's a Bloomberg story titled "Pakistan, Land of Entrepreneurs":

On a warm Sunday morning in November, Arif Habib leaves his posh home near the seafront in southern Karachi and drives across town in a silver Toyota Prado SUV. About half an hour later, he arrives to check up on his latest project: a 2,100-acre residential development at the northern tip of this city of 20 million. He hops out, shakes hands with young company call-center workers who are dressed for a cricket match, and joins them at the edge of the playing field for a traditional Pakistani breakfast of curried chickpeas and semolina pudding. After a quick tour of the construction site, he straps on his leg pads, grabs his bat, and heads onto the field. “The principles of cricket are very effective in business,” says Habib, 59. “The goal is to stay at the wicket, hit the right balls, leave the balls that don’t quite work, and keep an eye on the scoreboard. I feel that my childhood association with cricket has contributed to my success.”

Habib, who started as a stockbroker more than four decades ago, has expanded his Arif Habib Group into a 13-company business that has invested $2 billion in financial services, cement, fertilizer, and steel factories since 2004. His group and a clutch of others have become conglomerates of a kind that went out of fashion in the West but seem suited to the often chaotic conditions in Pakistan. Engro (ENGRO), a maker of fertilizer, has moved into packaged foods and coal mining. Billionaire Mian Muhammad Mansha, one of Pakistan’s richest men, is importing 2,500 milk cows from Australia to start a dairy business after running MCB Bank, Nishat Mills, and D.G. Khan Cement.

These companies have prospered in a country that, since joining the U.S. in the war on terror after Sept. 11, has lost more than 40,000 people to retaliatory bombings by the Taliban. Political violence in Karachi has killed 2,000 Pakistanis this year, and an energy crisis—power outages last as long as 18 hours a day—has led to social unrest. Foreign direct investment declined 24 percent to $244 million in the four months ended Oct. 31, according to the central bank.

At the same time, some 70 million Pakistanis—40 percent of the population—have become middle-class, says Sakib Sherani, chief executive of Macro Economic Insights, a research firm in Islamabad. A boom in agriculture and residential property, as well as jobs in hot sectors such as telecom and media, have helped Pakistanis prosper. “Just go to the malls and see the number of customers who are actually buying in upscale stores and that shows you how robust the demand is,” says Azfer Naseem, head of research for Elixir Securities in Karachi. “Despite the energy crisis, we have growth of 3 percent.”

Sherani of Macro Economic Insights estimates the middle class doubled in size between 2002 and 2012. “Those who understand the difference between the perception of Pakistan and the reality have made a killing,” Habib says. “Foreigners don’t come here, so the field is wide open.” The KSE100, the benchmark index of the Karachi Exchange, has risen elevenfold since mid-2001. Shares in the index are up 43 percent this year alone. Over the past decade, stocks have been buoyed by corporate earnings, which were bolstered in turn by rising consumer spending.
Today, Habib has 11,000 employees and annual revenue of 100 billion rupees. He plans to expand into commodities trading and warehousing. “I’ve created all my wealth in Pakistan and reinvested all of it here,” says Habib, who drives himself to his cricket matches and is never accompanied by security guards. In 1998, when Pakistan’s share index fell to a record low after the government tested nuclear weapons, Habib bought shares even though “people thought I was mad.”...

Comment by Riaz Haq on December 1, 2012 at 6:14pm

In a recent piece tiled "Pakistan Staring into the Abyss", Pakistani journalist Najam Sethi captures the highly pessimistic mood of the press coverage and books about Pakistan.

Historically, purveyors of books and magazines predicting doom and gloom have mostly been wrong but sold lots of copies.

Matt Ridley, the author of "The Rational Optimist", says that the prophets of doom and gloom from Robert Malthus to Paul Ehrlich(both predicted catastrophe of mass starvation) have always found great acceptance as "sages" in their time but proved to be completely wrong because they discount human resilience and ingenuity.

The reasons for wide acceptance of pessimists have to do with how the human brain has evolved through the millennia.

It's been established that once the amygdala starts hunting for bad news, it'll mostly find bad news.

Peter Diamandis explains this phenomenon well in his book "Abundance-Why Future is Better Than You Think".

Here's a excerpt from Diamandis's book:

"These are turbulent times. A quick glance at the headlines is enough to set anybody on edge-with endless media stream that has lately become our lives-it's hard to get away from those headlines. Worse, evolution shaped human brain to be acutely aware of all potential dangers...this dire combination has a profound impact on human perception: It literally shuts off our ability to take in good news."

In Pakistan's case, the good news continues to be the emergence of a large and growing middle class population and a vibrant mass media and civil society which underpin the country's extraordinary resilience.

Pakistan needs such resilience to complete its difficult ongoing transition to democracy which, the history tells us, has never been easy for any nation.

I believe Pakistan is making good progress toward becoming a prosperous urban middle class democracy.

Comment by Riaz Haq on December 5, 2012 at 10:35pm

Here's a Dawn story on growing retail sector in Pakistan:

Karachi’s Dolmen City Mall is a large, plush building that would not be out of place in Dubai. Heavily fortified with security guards, the interior is impressive, with its cavernous corridors and gleaming marble floor – a far cry from the hustle and bustle of the city’s other shopping areas.

Newly arrived from London earlier this year, Karachi residents were insistent that I must see this wonderful new addition to the city. When I did, it was something of a home from home. In addition to high end local clothing brands were a whole plethora of foreign stores, from Mango, to Next, to the Body Shop. Many (though not all) of these are British imports.

The latest to open its doors was Debenhams, stalwart of the British high street, which this year became the first international department store in Pakistan with its branch in Dolmen. It joins other UK brands such as Next, Early Learning Centre, Accessorize and Monsoon.

So what is behind the influx of foreign stores to Karachi’s high streets? Internationally, Pakistan is not viewed as an obvious market for retail brands due to security concerns – both real and perceived – and the attendant difficulties of doing business.

However, the numbers tell a different story. The retail sector is one of the fastest-growing in Pakistan, and is expected to grow at a rate of 7 per cent per year until 2015. To give some indication of the growth it has already seen in recent years, compare the market value in 2006 – £19124.1 million – with 2010, when it had increased to £26541.2 million.

Yasin Paracha runs Team A Ventures, the company which holds the franchises for UK brands Debenhams, Next, Early Learning Centre, Accessorize, and Mothercare. He explains that the historic ties between the two countries means that British brands have instant recognition in Pakistan.

“People in our target market are used to travelling to London frequently,” he says – many people will have visited the UK as tourists, students, or on family or business visits.

Indeed, the growth of this target market – young, urban, and with significant disposable income – is crucial to increased retail operations in Pakistan. The urbanized middle classes are a steadily growing group.

Of Pakistan’s 180-million strong population, around 55 million live in cities such as Karachi, Lahore, and Faisalabad. Consumerism is on the up, fuelled by a recent boom in consumer banking and the media industry, and encouraged by ever-increasing investment from both local and foreign chains. Traditionally, many people in this target market have preferred to do much of their shopping abroad, meaning that they are already predisposed to foreign brands.

But what about the security risks for new businesses? Karachi, in particular, is home to outbreaks of sectarian and ethnic violence, terrorist attacks, and a high instance of crime including extortion rackets.

“Of course it’s a concern for new investors,” says Paracha. “On the surface of it, a lot of brands are hesitant, but when they first make the trip to Pakistan, they are reassured because they realise that the things on the ground are very different from what they see in the media.”

However, the situation cannot be ignored. “One has to be cautious,” Paracha continues. “You can’t go into a very aggressive expansion because you can’t deny the security issue, especially in some cities. But so far we have not had a major negative impact on our operations.”

The visible success of household names like Debenhams and Next in Pakistan is likely t encourage other British brands to see the country as a potentially viable market. In addition to this, there is a concerted drive from the UK government to encourage British investment in Pakistan, due to a bilateral trade agreement between the two countries....

Comment by Riaz Haq on December 16, 2012 at 7:36pm
Comment by Riaz Haq on December 19, 2012 at 9:06pm

Here are a couple of reports on Pak economy:

1. Dr. Ishrat Husain in The News:

“The economy is facing lot of difficulties due to bad governance,” he said at a seminar on ‘Pakistan’s Economic Outlook – 2013 & Beyond’ organised by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP) on Tuesday evening.

Dr Ishrat, who is also Dean and Director of Institute of Business Administration, disagreed with the doom and gloom painted about the economy by other speakers, saying the situation is not as worst as being projected. “There is plenty of room to improve the system by improving good governance in law and order, education and energy,” he added.

He said that it was an issue of governance that authorities were not taking action against tax evaders and criminals. “Due to lack of enforcement the criminals feel comfortable,” he said.

The economic situation is much better right now, he said and added that the country had witnessed a crisis like situation when oil ships were anchored on the ports and government had no money to pay them in the past.

He neither criticised the present government setup nor supported it, but said that the democratic system should be given opportunity for sustainable economic growth. “We did not allow democratic system to flourish,” he added.

Further, Dr Ishrat said that 50 percent population of Pakistan is living in an urbanised society, and most of them belong to middle class. Besides, a big strength of youth would set direction for better.

To a question about rupee depreciation against dollar that is creating difficulties in capital investment for manufacturing sector, which would result in decline in exports, he said rupee depreciation will help in increasing exports. He said that the nation was blinded by short-term measures and frequent changes of heads at SBP and finance ministry also resulted in economic instability.

2. Reuters on Pak current account deficit:

Pakistan’s current account deficit for the July-November period of the 2012/13 fiscal year was $365 million, compared with a deficit of $2.341 billion in the same period last year, the central bank said on Thursday.

In November, the current account deficit was $638 million.

The current account deficit for the 2011/12 fiscal year was $4.634 billion compared with $214 million in the 2010/11 fiscal year.

“This was positive mainly because of lower commodity prices and the gap between imports and exports was lower,” said Ahsan Mehanti, an analyst at Arif Habib Corp.

“At the same time, there was higher foreign investment in the country and higher remittances. There was a higher rupee to dollar value.”

Comment by Riaz Haq on July 22, 2013 at 5:36pm

Here's a New York Times story on economic and income mobility in US:

This geography appears to play a major role in making Atlanta one of the metropolitan areas where it is most difficult for lower-income households to rise into the middle class and beyond, according to a new study that other researchers are calling the most detailed portrait yet of income mobility in the United States.

The study — based on millions of anonymous earnings records and being released this week by a team of top academic economists — is the first with enough data to compare upward mobility across metropolitan areas. These comparisons provide some of the most powerful evidence so far about the factors that seem to drive people’s chances of rising beyond the station of their birth, including education, family structure and the economic layout of metropolitan areas.

Climbing the income ladder occurs less often in the Southeast and industrial Midwest, the data shows, with the odds notably low in Atlanta, Charlotte, Memphis, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Cincinnati and Columbus. By contrast, some of the highest rates occur in the Northeast, Great Plains and West, including in New York, Boston, Salt Lake City, Pittsburgh, Seattle and large swaths of California and Minnesota.

“Where you grow up matters,” said Nathaniel Hendren, a Harvard economist and one of the study’s authors. “There is tremendous variation across the U.S. in the extent to which kids can rise out of poverty.”

That variation does not stem simply from the fact that some areas have higher average incomes: upward mobility rates, Mr. Hendren added, often differ sharply in areas where average income is similar, like Atlanta and Seattle.

The gaps can be stark. On average, fairly poor children in Seattle — those who grew up in the 25th percentile of the national income distribution — do as well financially when they grow up as middle-class children — those who grew up at the 50th percentile — from Atlanta.

Geography mattered much less for well-off children than for middle-class and poor children, according to the results. In an economic echo of Tolstoy’s line about happy families being alike, the chances that affluent children grow up to be affluent are broadly similar across metropolitan areas.
What they found surprised them, said Raj Chetty, one of the authors and the most recent winner of the John Bates Clark Medal, which the American Economic Association awards to the country’s best academic economist under the age of 40. The researchers concluded that larger tax credits for the poor and higher taxes on the affluent seemed to improve income mobility only slightly. The economists also found only modest or no correlation between mobility and the number of local colleges and their tuition rates or between mobility and the amount of extreme wealth in a region.

But the researchers identified four broad factors that appeared to affect income mobility, including the size and dispersion of the local middle class. All else being equal, upward mobility tended to be higher in metropolitan areas where poor families were more dispersed among mixed-income neighborhoods.

Income mobility was also higher in areas with more two-parent households, better elementary schools and high schools, and more civic engagement, including membership in religious and community groups.

Comment by Riaz Haq on March 29, 2015 at 7:19pm

Breaking the Caste Barrier: Intergenerational Mobility in India
Viktoria Hnatkovskay
, Amartya Lahiriy
, and Sourabh B. Pauly

"Our findings are comparable with
the intergenerational mobility results in other developing countries. For instance, our intergenerational income elasticity estimate for the last survey round of 2004-05 (for India) is around 0.5 which is similar to elasticities estimated for Brazil and South Africa around the same period."

Comment by Riaz Haq on May 4, 2015 at 1:34pm

A large new study is about to overturn the findings of Moving to Opportunity. Based on the earnings records of millions of families that moved with children, it finds that poor children who grow up in some cities and towns have sharply better odds of escaping poverty than similar poor children elsewhere.

The feelings heard across Baltimore’s recent protests — of being trapped in poverty — seem to be backed up by the new data. Among the nation’s 100 largest counties, the one where children face the worst odds of escaping poverty is the city of Baltimore, the study found.

The city is especially harsh for boys: Low-income boys who grew up there in recent decades make roughly 25 percent less as adults than similar low-income boys who were born in the city and moved as small children to an average place.

Beyond Baltimore, economists say the study offers perhaps the most detailed portrait yet of upward mobility — and the lack of it. The findings suggest that geography does not merely separate rich from poor but also plays a large role in determining which poor children achieve the so-called American dream.

How neighborhoods affect children “has been a quandary with which social science has been grappling for decades,” said David B. Grusky, director of the Center on Poverty and Inequality at Stanford University, who was not involved in the research. “This delivers the most compelling evidence yet that neighborhoods matter in a really big way.”

Raj Chetty, one of the study’s authors, has presented the findings to members of the Obama administration, as well as to Hillary Rodham Clinton and Jeb Bush, both of whom have signaled that mobility will be central themes of their 2016 presidential campaigns. After more than 15 years of mostly mediocre economic growth and rising income inequality, many families say they are frustrated and anxious about trying to get ahead.

“The data shows we can do something about upward mobility,” said Mr. Chetty, a Harvard professor, who conducted the main study along with Nathaniel Hendren, also a Harvard economist. “Every extra year of childhood spent in a better neighborhood seems to matter.”

The places where poor children face the worst odds include some — but not all — of the nation’s largest urban areas, like Atlanta; Chicago; Los Angeles; Milwaukee; Orlando, West Palm Beach and Tampa in Florida; Austin, Tex.; the Bronx; and the parts of Manhattan with low-income neighborhoods.

The places most conducive to upward mobility include large cities — San Francisco, San Diego, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas and Providence, R.I. — and major suburban counties, such as Fairfax, Va.; Bergen, N.J.; Bucks, Pa.; Macomb, Mich.; Worcester, Mass.; and Contra Costa, Calif.

These places tend to share several traits, Mr. Hendren said. They have elementary schools with higher test scores, a higher share of two-parent families, greater levels of involvement in civic and religious groups and more residential integration of affluent, middle-class and poor families.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 6, 2018 at 1:56pm

Pakistan is among the most upwardly mobile nations in the world, according to a new Standard Chartered Bank study titled "Climbing the Prosperity Ladder".

The Standard Chartered study looks into social mobility, financial proficiency and digital savviness among 11,000 emerging affluent consumers in China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Singapore, South Korea and the UAE. 34% of Pakistani respondents said their incomes have increased by more than 50% over the last 5 years while 44% said they have seen 10% or more income growth in the last year.

China, India and Pakistan:

Standard Chartered study talks about the "fast-growing economies of China, India and Pakistan are providing abundant opportunities for scaling the social pyramid". Here's an excerpt of the Standard Chartered report:

The fast-growing economies of China, India and Pakistan are providing abundant opportunities for scaling the social pyramid. Leading the way, in both China and India 67% of the emerging affluent are experiencing positive social mobility, while Pakistan is not far behind with 64%. Of the emerging affluent in these countries, India and Pakistan both have more than one in 10 (11%) that are experiencing supercharged social mobility, versus 7% in China. Strong earnings progression is fueling impressive rates of social mobility in all three countries. Many of the socially mobile have benefitted from a salary increase of 50% or more in the last five years – 34% in Pakistan, followed by 30% in India and 26% in China. This gap could widen, with India and Pakistan more optimistic about their future salaries than their Chinese counterparts. Almost half of the socially mobile in Pakistan (48%) and India (46%) predict another earnings increase of 50% or more in the next five years, whereas less than three in 10 (29%) expect the same in China. While the emerging affluent in China are more cautious about salary growth than their counterparts in fast-growing Pakistan and India, workplace remuneration is just one side of the social mobility equation. Education has been considered crucial to improving social standing in China for a long time, but the generational shift towards university access among the socially mobile is larger than any other market: more than nine in 10 have attended university (91%), compared to 34% of their fathers and 29% of their mothers


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