PCI and its Measurement

Per Capita Income (PCI) is a measure of the average income earned per person in a particular geographic region or country over a specific period. This economic indicator is calculated by dividing the total income earned by the total population of the region or country.


PCI is widely used to compare the living standards and economic growth of different countries or regions, as it considers both the total income and the population size. Most of the time, a higher PCI means that people have a higher standard of living because they have more money to spend on goods and services.

Understanding PCI

PCI is an important economic metric because it shows how well people in a country live. It is calculated by dividing the total income of a country by the number of people who live there. This gives the average income per person in the country. In other words, it is the amount of money an individual would earn if the country’s total income were divided equally among all its inhabitants (Source: Wikipedia).

Most of the time, PCI is calculated in nominal terms, which means that it doesn’t consider inflation. However, the calculation can be adjusted to real terms by using an appropriate price index to account for inflation. The real PCI is a better indicator of the economic well-being of a country as it adjusts for changes in the value of money over time.

The formula for calculating Per Capita Income (PCI) is as follows:

PCI = Total Income of the Country / Total Population of the Country

PCI = NI/ Total Population of the Country

GDP Per Capita Income = GDP/ Total Population of the Country

GNP Per Capita Income = GNP/ Total Population of the Country

The amount of money the nation earned overall over a specific time period from both individuals and businesses is known as its total income. This can include salaries, wages, profits, and other sources of income.

The country’s total population includes all of the people who live inside its borders, whether they are citizens or not.

Once the country’s total income and population are known, the PCI can be calculated by dividing the total income by the total population. This gives the average income per person in the country. PCI is usually expressed in terms of Euro or US Dollar to compare with the rest of the world easily.

Uses of PCI

PCI is an essential indicator used in economic analysis for several reasons. Firstly, it provides a general idea of the income distribution within a country. If the PCI is high, it generally means that the standard of living is high and people have higher purchasing power, leading to better access to goods and services.

Similarly, PCI is a useful way to compare how different countries’ economies are doing. By comparing the PCIs of different countries, we can see how different their economies are. For example, countries with a high PCI are usually developed countries, while those with a low PCI are often developing countries.

Furthermore, PCI is a critical factor in determining a country’s economic development level. It helps policymakers identify areas that need improvement and allocate resources accordingly. For example, a country with a low PCI may need to invest in infrastructure, education, or other areas to improve its economic conditions and improve its living standards.

Limitations of PCI

PCI is a good way to figure out how well a country’s economy is doing, but it has some flaws. Firstly, it does not consider the income distribution within a country. Two countries with the same PCI may have vastly different income distributions, which can significantly affect the well-being of their populations.

In the same way, PCI doesn’t take into account things that have nothing to do with money but still affect the standard of living. For example, a country with a high PCI may have poor healthcare or education systems, leading to a lower quality of life for its citizens.


Per Capita Income (PCI) measures the average income earned by a person in a specific geographic region, typically a country. It is determined by dividing a country’s total income by its population. PCI is an essential economic indicator that helps policymakers and analysts comprehend a country’s economic conditions.