National Social Protection Committee produces seven decisions at third meeting

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National Social Protection Committee produces seven decisions at third meeting

 

Date: December 21, 2019

The National Social Protection Committee held its third meeting at the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday. Vice President U Myint Swe, who is chairman of the committee, delivered a speech at the meeting.

In his speech, the Vice President said this committee was formed with him in lead and twelve other members, assigned 11 duties, in order to facilitate effectiveness in the National Social Protection Strategic Plan and its related activities. He said they have formed working committees, technical support committees, monitoring and evaluating committees and also formed relevant subcommittees as needed.
The Vice President said that this committee’s first meeting was held on 15 June 2018 and the second meeting on 1 March 2019, where 24 decisions were made from both of these meetings. He said nine of them have been completed and fifteen are ongoing. He added that as social protection benefits all citizens the ongoing processes should have a designated time frame and should be completed swiftly.

The Vice President said the Union government has designed and is implementing the National Action Plan for Myanmar Social Protection and the Myanmar Social Protection Sector Mid-Term Project (2018-2023). He said social protection processes first began in the 2017-2018 FY, especially the Social Protection Monetary Support Programme saw the swift expansion of beneficiaries and implementation areas.

The Vice President said monetary assistance has also increased and will increase again in the next few years. He said this is why there is a need to establish a system for ensuring process implementation and administration, monitoring and evaluation, and accepting and resolving complaints.

The Vice President said long-term fund income is important for effective implementation of social protection. He said that looking at the source of the funding programmes, the social pension for senior citizens started in 2017-2018 FY, the Maternal and Child Cash Transfer (MCCT) Programme in Rakhine, Kayin and Kayah states and Naga Self-Administered Zone, and the Integrated Self-Help Group (ISHG) are supported from the national fund.

The Vice President said Chin State’s MCCT is funded by the Livelihood and Food Security Trust Fund (LIFT) for the initial two years and four months. He said the MCCT programmes will be implemented in Shan State and Ayeyawady Region in this financial year and will be co-financed by the Union government and World Bank’s low-interest loan.

The Vice President said the Union SWRR Ministry receives a relatively low budget and it may be difficult to support the annually expanding social protection programmes and this needs to be put into consideration in preparing budget proposals. He said this is why the SWRR Ministry needs to make necessary discussions with the Ministry of Planning, Finance and Industry.

The Vice President said that while social protection processes may seem to have high expenses, they are essential to reducing social protection repercussions, supporting development of human resources, and supplementing basic income. He said these processes have been in play for many years around the world and need to be implemented in Myanmar with the cooperation of all relevant ministries.

Next, Dr Win Myat Aye explained about the social protection processes in progress and his ministry’s Director-General Dr Daw San San Aye explained about the completed implementation of previous meetings’ decisions and the MCCT programmes for Shan State and Ayeyawady Region.

Next, SWRR Director U Kyaw Lin Htin gave a briefing about the Social Management Information System, monitoring and evaluation, and electronic cash transfer. This was followed by the deputy ministers and other officials at the meeting participating in discussions about their relevant sectors on social protection.

The meeting produced seven decisions, after which Vice President U Myint Swe responded to the discussions and concluded the meeting with a closing speech.
Present at the meeting were committee vice-chairman (1) Union SWRR Minister Dr Win Myat Aye, committee members and deputy ministers Maj-Gen Aung Thu, U Tin Myint, U Win Maw Tun and U Soe Aung, permanent secretaries, directors-general and department heads.