São Tomé and Príncipe: World Bank intensifies social protection and skills development project in São Tomé and Príncipe with $ 8 million
Washington – The World Bank Board of Directors has approved additional funding of $ 8 million for the Social Protection and Skills Development Project (PSSD) in Sao Tome and Principe (STP). This grant reinforces the ongoing PSDD work and strengthens government support for the development, management and operation of an effective and sustainable national safety net system for poor households. The project also supports inclusive and labor market relevant skills development programs, which have benefited 2,500 poor households over the past two years.
While strict measures have been put in place to reduce the impact of COVID-19 (coronavirus), STP’s economy has been severely affected by the pandemic. The country has mainly suffered significant losses in the tourism industry, which has been a major driver of private sector growth in recent years and the source of much of the country’s formal employment opportunities.
As a result of COVID-19, 8,000 new households have fallen or are falling into poverty in STP, in addition to the 24,000 households that are already below the poverty line.
This funding will meet the urgent needs of the STP population by scaling up project activities in the same territorial areas covered by the parent project to provide cash transfers to an additional 16,000 households over a nine-month period. These 16,000 households represent 50% of the country’s poor population and will cover the 8,000 households that are falling into poverty due to COVID-19.
“The protection of the poor and vulnerable must be at the center of any development intervention. Therefore, social protection projects not only protect people, but they also help to ensure that the gains made in poverty reduction over the past decades are not completely lost, ”said Jean-Christophe Carret, Director of the World Bank in Sao Tome and Principe.
Approval of this AF brings the total budget of the Social Protection and Skills Development Project to $ 18 million.
PRESS RELEASE N °: 2021/094 / AFR