KHARTOUM, March 18, 2021- The World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors recently approved additional financing of $210 million in International Development Association Pre-arrears Clearance Grant and $210 million in donor contributions for the second phase of the Sudan Family Support Program (SFSP), the Thamarat Program.
“We are very pleased to continue our working partnership with the government of Sudan in its efforts to effectively support Sudanese families. The government has demonstrated its commitment to make this program a success by mobilizing all resources available. This additional financing reaffirms the World Bank’s pledge to continue supporting the government’s commendable economic reform efforts to stabilize the economy and to re-engage with the international community,” said Ousmane Dione, World Bank Country Director for Eritrea, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Sudan.
Specifically, the program will provide five U.S. dollars to each qualified person in a household initially for a period of six months. Subject to funding availability, the transfers will be ramped up to twelve months, with the aim of eventually reaching 80% of the population or nearly 32 million citizens.
The first phase of the program ($400 million) was officially launched on February 24, 2021 in Khartoum in the presence of Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok. Approximately 11.3 million people are expected to benefit from the initial phase of the project that will be implemented in Khartoum, Red Sea, South Darfur, and Kassala states, representing 33% of the total expected number of beneficiaries when the program is at full scale.
As of March 3rd, about 79,142 Sudanese households (close to 400,000 beneficiaries) received their first month payment through cash cards. Total disbursement to these beneficiaries is about $1.9 million. The majority of beneficiaries are in Khartoum State, and the support will soon be extended to other states. The second phase of SFSP will reach around 80% of households in the Sudanese states of Blue Nile, White Nile, Sinnar, Central Darfur, East Darfur, North Kordofan, South Kordofan, and West Kordofan (approximately 13.4 million people).
“The launching of this program will restore confidence by developing effective social protection policies and institutions that fulfill the demands and aspiration of the Sudanese people for a decent living,” Prime Minister Hamdok said during the launch of the first phase of the program.
The project has three components: (i) Provision of Cash Transfers; (ii) Establish Delivery Systems and Build Institutional Capacity; and (iii) Project Management, Monitoring and Evaluation, and Learning. The program is implemented by the Government of Sudan including the Ministries of Finance and Economic Planning, Social Development, and Interior, along with other relevant agencies.
The World Bank will provide technical support to the government in order to strengthen its financial and social protection system and monitor the program’s activities to ensure effective implementation. The SFSP is financially supported by the World Bank and the Sudan Transition and Recovery Support (STARS) Multi Donor Trust Fund that includes Canada, European Union, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Netherlands, Norway, State and Peace Building Trust Fund (SPF), Sweden and United Kingdom.
The Sudan Transition and Recovery Support Trust Fund (STARS) is an umbrella coordination platform for World Bank engagement in Sudan, supporting the Government of Sudan’s economic and peacebuilding transition. STARS partners include Canada, European Union, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Netherlands, Norway, State and Peace Building Trust Fund (SPF), Sweden and United Kingdom.