World Food Programme grants $454 million to Egypt to alleviate shortage

Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shokri thanked the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) for pledging US$454 million to Egypt, in a meeting on Sunday.

Shokri met with WFP’s Representative and Country Director in Egypt, Menghestab Haile, to discuss the food programme’s sustainable development goals for Egypt, planned between 2018 and 2023.

In the meeting, reported by the Official Spokesperson of the Foreign Ministry Ahmed Abu Zaid, Shokri articulated Egypt’s support for the WFP’s activities across Egypt and the Middle East. He agreed to provide the necessary facilities to the WFP’s regional office in Cairo.

According to Abu Zaid, Shokri will also assume the position of Deputy Head of the WFP’s Executive Council in 2018, and Head of the Executive Council in 2019.

The WFP details a number of operations for Egypt on its website. It plans to provide “food incentives” in remote community schools; sending or subsidizing food for students, to encourage parents to keep their children in school. It will also help national institutions systematically monitor and respond to food security risks, and enable vulnerable communities in rural Upper Egypt and border governorates to “adapt to climate change and socio-economic shocks”. The WFP will also tackle chronic malnutrition (harmful dietary habits) in vulnerable populations.

Syrian refugees will be another focus of the WFP’s program in Egypt. It will provide vulnerable Syrians with food assistance “upon the government’s request”, and attempt to support employment opportunities for refugees through “vocational and skills training, income generating activities and value chain”.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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