Maait confirms Egypt's commitment to update its social protection system

Ahram Online , Sunday 15 Oct 2023

Egypt is actively working to enhance its social protection system, aiming for greater flexibility, inclusivity, and sustainability, according to Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait, speaking on Saturday at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank (WB) meetings in Marrakesh.

Children benefited from the Takaful and Karama programme. Photo courtesy of Ministry of Social Solid
Children benefited from the Takaful and Karama programme. Photo courtesy of Ministry of Social Solidarity


Maait highlighted that the government recently launched a range of financial packages to alleviate the economic challenges resulting from complex global crises.

Over the last three years, the Egyptian government has allocated approximately EGP 450 billion for social incentive programs, including consecutive wage and pension increases, as well as the Takaful and Karama and Social Solidarity initiatives.

He emphasized the high priority placed on the health, education, and social protection sectors, aligning with Egypt's Vision 2030 and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Maait noted that his ministry has earmarked more than EGP 529 billion for social protection programs in the fiscal year 2023/24, a significant increase from the EGP 244 billion allocated in 2014/15.

Furthermore, the government has boosted funding for the Takaful and Karama program, reaching EGP 35.5 billion in the current fiscal year, compared to EGP 12.1 billion in 2014/15.

In September, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi increased Takaful and Karama benefits for five million households by 15 percent and doubled the exceptional grant for 11 million pensioners and beneficiaries to EGP 600.

Takaful and Karama, a cornerstone of Egypt's social protection system, was launched in 2015 to provide support to impoverished families with school-age children, older people, and people with special needs in Upper Egypt.

According to a recent World Bank report, Egypt is leading among countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) in providing social protection programmes.

The report indicates that government assistance benefits 25 percent of the poorest households in Egypt, with social protection registries covering over 50 percent of the population.

Egypt's efforts aim to support the most economically vulnerable groups facing rising prices and increasing inflation rates. 

In September, Egypt’s annual headline inflation decelerated to 38 percent, down from 39.7 percent the previous month but still significantly above the 15 percent rate observed in the same month in 2022, according to recent official data.

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