(KHARTOUM) – The European Union and the World Bank Saturday signed a partnership agreement to manage $110 million to fund Sudan Family Support Programme (SFSP) provided by the European countries.
This European support is critical for the Sudanese government to implement tough economic reforms including the end of commodities subsidies which would affect poor families.
“The signed agreement allocates a total amount of EUR 92.9 million (USD 110 million) to the Sudan Transition and Recovery Support (STARS) Multi-Donor Trust Fund administered and managed by the World Bank,” said a statement released by the EU office in Khartoum.
The trust fund is the primary financing mechanism for the government-led and implemented Sudan Family Support Program.
At the occasion, the ambassadors of France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden also announced their support, summing up to $78.2 million USD, bringing the total Team Europe contribution to the SFSP to $186.6 million.
The Sweden Ambassador said in a tweet after the signing ceremony that her country signed bilateral support to the programme of almost $25 million, through the World Bank.
The signing ceremony was held at the Prime Minister’s Office in the presence of Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok, the Ministers of Labour and Social Development, Culture and Information, the Acting Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, European Ambassadors and UN officials.
The agreement was signed by Ambassador of the European Union to Sudan, Robert van den Dool and Ousmane Dione, Country Director for Eritrea, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Sudan of the World Bank.
Hamdok commended the efforts made by the World Bank, the exemplary cooperation with the EU and its member states and the steps in following on the pledges made in the Berlin Conference.
Today’s ceremony marks “an important step in enabling the civilian-led Transitional Government to provide the much-needed assistance to the most vulnerable Sudanese as the cabinet accelerates its urgent economic reforms,” he said.
For his part, EU Ambassador Robert van den Dool said that the European Union is making good on its pledge at the Berlin conference in June 2020, to support the transitional government in its efforts to launch economic reforms.
“Together with the contributions announced today by EU member states, we have also shown that this Team Europe Approach allows us to join forces very effectively with our partners to make an even bigger difference for Sudan and its people,” den Dool added.
He also, disclosed that the European Union has also helped in triggering the World Bank to consider contributing substantially with resources which will be decided by its Board in the coming days.
The Sudan Family Support Programme is led and implemented by the Sudanese government. The Programme is being implemented by the Ministries of Finance and Economic Planning, Labour and Social Development, and Interior, along with other relevant agencies, and will be executed by the Digital Economy Agency.
The pilot phase is being launched in October 2020 and the program will be gradually scaled up over the next few months, starting with the states of Khartoum, Red Sea, South Darfur and Kassala.
The second phase will roll out to the other most affected states.
Source: Sudan Tribune