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Additional funding for Sudan's Family Support Programme

March 25 - 2021 KHARTOUM
EU Ambassador Robert van den Dool, Sudan’s PM Abdallah Hamdok, and World Bank country director Ousmane Dion at the signing of the agreement on the Sudanese Samarat Family Support Programme in September 2020 (photo: EU)
EU Ambassador Robert van den Dool, Sudan’s PM Abdallah Hamdok, and World Bank country director Ousmane Dion at the signing of the agreement on the Sudanese Samarat Family Support Programme in September 2020 (photo: EU)

The World Bank and the Sudanese government officially signed an agreement yesterday to confirm additional financial support of $420 million for the second phase of Sudan’s Samarat Family Support Programme. Financial support for the programme now amounts to a total of $820 million.

Minister of Finance and Economic Planning Jibril Ibrahim signed on behalf of the Sudanese government while Ousmane Dion, World Bank Country Director for Eritrea, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Sudan, signed on behalf of the World Bank.

At the signing ceremony at the Ministry of Finance in Khartoum yesterday, Jibril Ibrahim expressed his aspirations for the programme to spread its benefit to all families in all states, and to contribute to alleviating poverty and suffering.

He further called on Sudanese families to register immediately in the civil registry so that they can receive their benefits.

Samarat

The Family Support Programme Samarat, meaning 'fruits', was launched last year to reduce the impact of economic reforms on low-income families by providing financial aid and improving the social protection system and safety nets.

The programme secured US$ 400 million in funding for the first phase; a US$200 grant from the World Bank and another US$200 from the Sudan Transition and Recovery Support Trust Fund (STARS). STARS is an umbrella coordination platform that includes Canada, the European Union, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, the State and Peacebuilding Fund, and the United Kingdom.

For the second phase of the programme, to scale up activities and reach as many people as possible, an additional US$420 million in funding has been made available. This includes another US$210 million World Bank grant and a US$210 million worth of donor contributions.

The first phase of the programme was officially launched on February 24, 2021, and approximately 11.3 million people are expected to benefit from this initial phase. Eventually, the aim is to reach 80% of the population.

Last year it was estimated that  77 per cent of all Sudanese live in poverty, which means they can spend less than $1,25 a day.


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