The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Monday announced that they had offered a $200 million additional financing to assist and strengthen the Benazir Income Support Programme.
In the press release issued by the Manila-based loan providing organization, they mentioned that an ADB-financed social protection development project, officially in working since October 2013, had enabled the enrollment of over 855,000 beneficiaries of the Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP).
They further said that additional financing of $200 million will help them to support cash transfers as well as to take some measures to strengthen BISP Institutional setup.
The Director of Public Management, Financial Sector, and Trade for ADB’s Central and West Asia Department, Tariq Niazi said that, “Social protection initiatives like the BISP are essential to ensure that the poorest segments of the population do not go more into poverty and hunger, particularly at a time when the country is dealing with tough macroeconomic challenges.”
He also said that the ADB had decided to support the government of Pakistan to “implement alternative modalities for poverty reduction and social safety such as funds transfer programs that will promote enhanced human capital and reduce cross-generational poverty”.
On this occasion, ADB Country Director for Pakistan, Xiaohong Yang, additionally stated this additional funding would “support further strengthening of BISP and refinements in financial management and controls”.
“A new policy research unit will also be set up inside BISP to help observe and refine the overall performance of ongoing programs and devise new cost-efficient and evidence-based initiatives such as poverty graduation initiatives and conditional fund transfers for nutrition and health in line with global top practices,” he also stated.