Extending social protection to rural populations: Perspectives for a common FAO and ILO approach

Despite the importance of social protection, today more than 70 percent of the world’s population still has no or limited access to comprehensive social protection. Coverage in rural areas, where about 80 percent of the world’s poor live, is even lower. Achieving an effective extension of the coverage of social protection benefits and services to the rural population is a key challenge which must be addressed in order to achieve SDG 1.3. “Implement nationally appropriate social protection systems and measures for all, including floors, and by 2030 achieve substantial coverage of the poor and the vulnerable”.

This will require bridging gaps and removing existing barriers that limit the access of rural populations to social protection.
Extending social protection for all is core to the work of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO). The present paper lays out the specific profiles, risks and vulnerabilities of rural populations and explores options to extend social protection coverage to them.