develop_region: 
Middle East & North Africa
iso2: 
EG
iso3: 
EGY
Continent: 
Africa
Official name: 
Arab Republic of Egypt

Social Protection in the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA)

This Online Community (OC) is part of the project "Social Protection Knowledge Generation and Policy Analysis in MENA", a partnership between the International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth (IPC-IG) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) Middle...

Child poverty remains an issue of concern in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Although the region has made significant progress in reducing extreme poverty and improving health, education and child survival rates, progress has been uneven. Higher-income countries have advanced more than lower-middle-income ones, and those impacted by humanitarian conflicts have seen reversals in child well-being indicators.

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Poverty rates in Upper Egypt have decreased compared to previous years because of the focus on social protection programs in the governorates of Upper Egypt, Deputy Minister of Planning, Follow-up and Administrative Reform of Planning Ahmed Kamali said Sunday. 

Kamali pointed out in a statement that the government looked at the problems and took the appropriate measures to reduce poverty rates, adding that the Egyptian government is working to address the development gaps in the provinces.

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Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli on Tuesday said the government will continue to support social protection programs and the subsidy system while establishing an accurate and sound database to determine the real beneficiaries. 

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Nine years after completing an administrative assistant training program in Assiut, a city 250 miles south of Cairo, Samiha Abdel Ghaffar still earns just 700 Egyptian pounds a month (about $42) at her position in a law firm. Each year, about 450,000 students complete vocational programs at the secondary level in Egypt, according to a 2017 report from the country’s official statistical agency.

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As Egypt’s poor fall between the anvil of low income and the hammer of price hikes, social protection programs become increasingly deemed as a vehicle for ensuring social and political stability. To this end, the Egyptian authorities plan to launch a new social protection system as of August to help the poor make ends meet as part of a new law for cash subsidies. The bill, which is expected to be passed by parliament later this month, will amalgamate all of the country’s cash-subsidy schemes into the Takaful and Karama program.

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A new social welfare law that would see beneficiaries of cash subsidy programmes merged under one umbrella is to be submitted this week to parliament for discussion before it goes to summer recess. The new law includes the criteria and mechanism of choosing those who are eligible to cash subsidies. According to the new law, those getting social solidarity pensions as well as the beneficiaries of Takaful and Karama and the one-year-old Forsa (Opportunity) programme will all be merged and governed by the rules applied to the Takaful scheme.    

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Egypt' Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly arrived on Friday at the operations room formed at the cabinet's Information and Decision Support Center (IDSC) to follow up the implementation of new transport fares in governorates after the new shifting in the prices of petroleum products earlier on the day. Egypt increased fuel prices early Friday in its latest round of subsidy cuts under a reform package. The latest cut in fuel subsidies is a condition of a $12-billion loan secured from the IMF in November 2016. A source earlier said that Cairo Governor Khaled Abdel-Aal is curr

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OPINION: Egypt continues implementing its reform program as the government is expected to lift the fuel subsidies after it has gradually cut them several times since 2014. 

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The World Bank approved new funding of $500 million for three years to help Egypt strengthen the country's social safety nets, the Ministry of Investment and International Cooperation said Wednesday. The new financing is aimed to support the expansion of the “Takaful and Karama” cash transfer programme, which was launched in 2015, for an additional three years, the ministry said in a statement on its official website. The Takaful and Karama programme, which translates to "Solidarity and Dignity," was launched in 2015 with $400 million in financing from the World Bank.

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