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UN, Mozambique unveil $18m joint social protection scheme

In a bid to address the multiple challenges Mozambique faces to support particularly vulnerable groups and reduce extreme poverty and food insecurity, a three-year Joint Programme on Social Protection has been launched together with the United Nations system”.With a budget of $18 million, the programme is intended to support the Mozambican government’s capacity to carry out the second phase of the National Basic Social Security Strategy, and to make its action plans operational.

The programme is financed by the Swedish ad Dutch embassies and by the Department for International Development (DFID) of the United Kingdom.

The agreement was formalized by the Mozambican Minister of Gender, Children and Social Welfare, Cidalia Chauque, the resident representative of the United Nations, Marcia Castro, and Mikael Elofsson, head of the development cooperation section at the Swedish embassy, on behalf of the three donors.

At the signing ceremony Chauque said the joint programme results from a partnership and the building of a common vision of basic social protection in Mozambique.

“This programme is of great importance since it strengthens our capacity to provide assistance for individuals and social groups living in poverty and vulnerability”, said the Minister.

The official added that the signing of the agreement was just a stage towards ensuring that more beneficiaries can be reached by social security.

“We are guaranteeing total commitment to the undertakings we have given through the programme signed today”, said Chauque.

She added: “We will do everything to ensure that at the end of the three-year period the activities agreed have been carried out and have achieved positive results that justify the investment”.

Marcia Castro said that, despite the 2007 law on social protection, the majority of the Mozambican population still faces high levels of vulnerability. Despite improved coverage of social protection, most poor people are still not being reached.

“The target figure for the number of beneficiaries from the social protection programmes in 2018 is 19 percent of the households living in poverty in Mozambique”, Castro pointed out.

Data from the latest national poverty assessment report by World Bank indicates that 54.7 percent of the population of 28.8 million lives below the poverty line.

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