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Egypt launches fundraising initiative to support informal workers hit by pandemic

The initiative to support casual labor affected by the coronavirus crisis aims to raise EGP 1 billion

Ahram Online , Tuesday 14 Apr 2020
A shopkeeper waits for customers at a souvenir shop at a popular tourist area named "Khan el-Khalili
A shopkeeper waits for customers at a souvenir shop at a popular tourist area named "Khan el-Khalili" in the al-Hussein and Al-Azhar districts in Cairo as Egypt ramps up efforts to slow the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Cairo, Egypt, April 6, 2020.(Reuters)
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Egypt's cabinet announced on Tuesday the launch of a fundraising initiative to support irregular workers affected by restrictive measures to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

The initiative intends to provide financial assistance to low-income families and informal workers hurt by the coronavirus crisis through working with the private sector and individuals, the cabinet said in a statement.

Donations from organisations or individuals can be made online through the initiative's website (www.Ahalena.gov.eg). The money can be donated whether online through a designated account in state-owned bank Banque Misr or via sending SMS to 2030.

The initiative will follow "strict standards" and "thoroughly revised" databases to assess those eligible for the aid, the statement said.

According to the newly-launched website, the government seeks to raise EGP 1 billion ($63.4 million). It has so far received EGP 3 million from 12 donors.

Egypt started Monday the first phase of the disbursement of an emergency payment of 500 pounds a month for three months for workers in the informal sector, as part of efforts to mitigate the economic impact of the crisis on them.

Around 1.4 million workers will benefit from the aid, according to the Ministry of Manpower. Around 1.9 million had registered to receive the grant but some 500,000 have been found ineligible.
 

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