The Agence Française de Développement (AFD) has approved a loan of €150 million to support Bangladesh's cash transfer programmes and Covid-19 responses.
The French Development Agency's executive board recently approved the concessional loan.
The loan will contribute to the World Bank's Cash Transfer Modernisation Project which seeks to improve the transparency and efficiency of selected cash transfer programmes for vulnerable people by modernising service delivery.
It will also support the government's efforts to address the social and economic consequences of Covid-19, said the Embassy of France in Dhaka on August 6.
The AFD and the World Bank will co-finance the project.
The three components of the project include the enhancement of cash transfer programmes, which incentivises actions towards improving the business processes under selected cash transfer programmes.
Modernisation of service delivery – which provides technical assistance to support the enhancements of technology assets, use integrated information systems for targeting and payment, improve citizen engagement, and strengthen the capacity of human resources – is a part of the project too.
The project components also include Contingent Emergency Response (CER) to allow project financing to be mobilised rapidly in response to a natural or human-induced shock, disaster or crisis. It will support the government's Covid-19 response.
Also, the loan will co-finance the Old Age Allowance programme under the social welfare ministry and department of social services until 2023.
It will directly benefit the country's most vulnerable people who are beneficiaries of this, other social welfare ministry cash transfer programmes, and non-beneficiaries who may qualify for these programmes.