Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (AFP)
Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has ordered the approval of a $400 million loan from a World Bank Group institution for a social scheme aimed at benefiting up to 1.5 million Egyptian families, said official news agency MENA on Thursday.
The loan was approved by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development last April to support the Karama (dignity) and Takaful (solidarity) social schemes.
The solidarity scheme is a conditional cash subsidy that pays each family LE325 in addition to LE60-LE100 per child on a monthly basis, while Dignity is a cash subsidy that pays each elderly or disabled person LE350 per month.
Impoverished Upper Egypt is expected to greatly benefit from the project, which would ensure children get access to education and healthcare, according to an April statement by Afrah Alawi El-Ahmadi, the World Bank senior social protection specialist and project team leader.
With staggering poverty rates reaching 26 percent of the population, Egypt remains one of the top 20 countries suffering from the prevalence of chronic malnutrition with a third of its children under the age of five stunted. In addition, at least a quarter of children do not enroll in basic education and up to half of them do not attend secondary schools.