Egypt launches initiative to provide social, health support to small-scale fishermen

Ahram Online , Saturday 21 Nov 2020

Manpower minister says the new initiative aims to support 50,000 small fishermen nationwide

Egyptian fisherman
A fisherman uses a traditional catching net at the Nile river in Beheira Governorate, Egypt (Reuters)

Egypt’s Minister of Manpower Mohamed Saafan announced the launching of a national initiative to support 50,000 small-scale fishermen nationwide, through fully including them under the health and social protection umbrella, a cabinet statement read on Saturday.


The initiative, dubbed “Egypt’s Fishermen,” is open to all state institutions so that they contribute to providing care to fishermen, as one of the neediest social strata, whose job nature is irregular and unstable, Saafan said, as he met with a group of fishermen in the Red Sea governorate.


The goal of such meetings is to establish comprehensive and correct databases for the country’s fishermen, so that social and health care can reach them, the minister said.


In the Red Sea, the minster followed up on the living conditions of fishermen, who are estimated at an amount of around 5,000 registered at eight organisations in the governorate.


Saafan issued immediate directives to the ministry’s directorate in the Red Sea to complete the registration of fishermen, in preparation for providing them with accident insurance that covers death as well as total or partial disability, which may occur as a result of an accident.


The initiative considers fishermen as irregular workers who deserve further social and financial support from the state.


Based on President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi’s directives, the cabinet in October said it will continue to disburse a EGP 500 ($32) monthly allowance to irregular workers affected by the repercussions of the coronavirus, up until December.


The Egyptian government has been giving financial assistance to irregular workers since the pandemic hit the country in mid-February.  

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