Lebanon Businessnews News

$200 million e-card injection
by World Food Program
Refugees and shops to benefit
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The World Food Program (WFP) estimates that by the end of 2016 around $209 million will be pumped into the electronic cards that are being used by refugees to buy provisions from minimarkets and supermarkets.

In the past six months, around $128 million has been injected into the local economy through the e-card system, according to Edward Johnson, external relations officer at WFP.

“Around 750,000 refugees will benefit this year from these cards,” he said.

The allocation of funds is expected to create an additional commercial opportunity for minimarkets and supermarkets taking part in the scheme.

The WFP has contracted 450 shops, including large retailers like TSC and the Co-op, where refugees are able to use the cards for their transactions. On average, each store could see an extra half a million dollars added to their turnover by the year end.

Johnson said: “Each month, refugees that are registered receive a sum of $30 to spend on food at the contracted retailers.”

Nine donors have contributed to the program, with Germany and the United States heading the list.

The program, named Digitalized Safety Net Management Systems, began in 2013. It has injected about $770 million in e-cards since its inception.
Reported by Yassmine Alieh
Date Posted: Aug 23, 2016
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