The European Union (EU) Ambassador Marchel Germann says the EU wants to increase the number of beneficiaries in the social cash transfer programme (SCTP) in the country.
He said the EU has since set aside 50 million euro (about K42.3 billion) for the next phase of the project, compared to the 35 million euro which was allocated in Phase I.
“We are now discussing Phase II. We are going to have a national coverage. We are providing 50 million euro for a period of four years. We believe that through this programme, we will be assisting many more vulnerable people,” Germann said.
He was speaking in Brussels, Belgium on Wednesday during a debate on Malawi’s social cash transfer programme.
The debate was taking place in the context of the design of a new 50 million euro Malawi National Social Support Programme.
The new 50 million euro social policy and resilience programme will be managed by the European Union (EU) Delegation to Malawi.
Panelists from both Brussels and EU offices in Lilongwe made it clear that social cash transfers may offer opportunities to build resilience while reducing inequalities in Malawi.
The discussion, moderated by Jürgen Hohmann, a social protection expert at the European Commission, had included the national authorising officer in the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Nations Msowoya and Patience Masi, project manager at KfW.
In his remarks, Msowoya said the funding of Phase II of the programme will improve the lives of the most poor in the country.
By December 2015, the SCTP had reached over 163 000 beneficiary households and the target is to reach 319 000 households with the new funding.