Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest on living wage and income  
Need help?


World bank, 2018
Poverty headcount ratio at $3.20 a day (2011 PPP) (% of population)
Population below international poverty line

Varies by region. 

National minimum wage

Equivalent to 21,890 Pakistani rupees per worker per month (rural areas of Sialkot).
Global Living Wage Coalition, 2019 

per month
Rural living wage

Equivalent to 25,806 Pakistani rupees per worker per month (urban areas of Sialkot).
Global Living Wage Coalition, 2019 

per month
Urban living wage
World bank, 2019
Employment in agriculture (% of total employment) (modeled ILO estimate)
Agricultural workforce
World bank, 2019
Agriculture, forestry, and fishing, value added (% of GDP)
Agriculture share of GDP

ITUC Global Rights Index, 2020
No guarantee of rights.

very high
Risk to workers' rights


Pakistan has a population of approximately 217 million people,[1] with 63% of its citizens living in rural areas[2] and the remaining 37% in urban centers.[3] Agriculture employs 36% of the working population[4] and accounts for 22% of the country's GDP.[5]

Despite Pakistan's high levels of agricultural production, the country is still burdened with high levels of food insecurity.[6] Small scale farmers face many challenges, including significantly small holdings, limited access to markets, credit and resources, as well as minimal off-farm employment opportunities.[7] In addition, high agricultural production has put pressure on the country's water resources, with roughly 90% of water resources used by the agricultural sector. Natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes, landslides and droughts are also a recurring problem in the country. [8]

Pakistan’s top produced commodities are sugar cane, buffalo milk, wheat, cow milk and rice.[9] In terms of export quantity, the top commodities are rice, potatoes, refined sugar, and wheat flour.[10]

  1. ^ World Bank. (2019).
  2. ^ World Bank. (2019).
  3. ^ World Bank. (2019).
  4. ^ World Bank (2020).
  5. ^ World Bank (2019).
  6. ^ FAO. (2019).
  7. ^ IFAD.
  8. ^ FAO. (2019).
  9. ^ FAOSTAT (2018).
  10. ^ FAOSTAT (2019).


Minimum Wage

The minimum wage in Pakistan varies by province, however, in all of them a minimum wage of 17,500 Pakistani rupees (89 EUR) is set for unskilled workers.[1] The legal workweek in Pakistan is 48 hours per week. Overtime payment and benefits are required for formally employed workers, although many workers are often employed as contract labor for which no benefits beyond minimum wage are required. Additionally, minimum wage regulations do not apply to workers in the agricultural sector, informal sector, or domestic servants.[2]

  1. ^ Wage Indicator Foundation (2020). Minimum Wage-Pakistan.
  2. ^ U.S. Department of State. 2019 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Pakistan.

Living Wage

The Global Living Wage Coalition has developed 2 living wage benchmarks for Pakistan based on the Anker methodology, one for urban Sialkot and one for rural Sialkot. Sialkot is one of the largest manufacturing centers in Pakistan, specifically in the sports-ball manufacturing, hence these 2 benchmarks are focused on sports-ball manufacturing workers.

The living wage estimate for rural Sialkot, Pakistan is 21,890 Pakistani rupees (112 EUR) per month. This estimate is based on a family of 5.5 with 1.65 full-time workers working in rural sports-ball manufacturing areas.[1]

The living wage benchmark for urban Sialkot, Pakistan is 25,806 Pakistani rupees (132 EUR) per month and is based on a family of 5 with 1.53 full-time workers working in urban sports-ball manufacturing areas.[2]

According to the original 2015 living wage benchmark study the estimated living wages are much higher than the prevailing average wage in the sports ball industry in Sialkot. In the case of rural Sialkot, the estimated living wage in more than twice the prevailing average wage in rural Sialkot.[3] Similarly, although the minimum wage in Pakistan varies by province, the 2 estimated living wage benchmarks are above the minimum wage of 17,500 Pakistani rupees (89 EUR) set for unskilled workers.

  1. ^ Global Living Wage Coalition (2019). Living Wage Update, December 2019 - Sialkot , Pakistan: Rural Sports-Ball Manufacturing Area.
  2. ^ Global Living Wage Coalition (2019). Living Wage Update, December 2019- Sialkot, Pakistan: Urban Sports-Ball Manufacturing Area.
  3. ^ Global Living Wage Coalition (2015). Anker Living Wage Reference Value: Urban Sialkot, Pakistan 2015.

What's happening


Living Wage Benchmark, Rural and Urban Pakistan

Living wage estimates for workers to be able to afford a basic but decent living standard in rural and urban Sialkot, Pakistan.


Wages in Context in the Garnment Industry in Asia

This report focuses on the minimum and living wages concerning the garment industry in Asia, presenting an overview of 9 countries.   


Clean Clothes Campaign-Pakistan Country Report

This report by the Clean Clothes Campaign, dives in the labor conditions of the garment industry in the Pakistani context.

Learned enough?