• Monday, Jan 30, 2023
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EU, Germany sends €33 million to strengthen social security in Bangladesh

  • Published at 11:16 am June 30th, 2021
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File photo: European Union flags flutter outside the European Commission headquarters, in Brussels on August 21, 2020 Reuters

This is the second disbursement from the joint €113 million grant made available by the EU and Germany as part of the Team Europe’s response to fight Covid-19

The European Union (EU) and Germany on Thursday transferred €33 million (around Tk330 crore) to the Government of Bangladesh to strengthen key areas of its social security system and build resilience to Covid-19.

The focus of the support will be on pandemic-affected workers in export-oriented industries, according to a Team Europe press release.

“With this grant, the EU and Germany recognize and support the government’s commitment to strengthen social security in Bangladesh, along with its commitment to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” it said.

This is the second disbursement from the joint €113 million grant made available by the EU and Germany as part of the Team Europe’s response to fight Covid-19 and its consequences in Bangladesh. The disbursement of this second payment comes after a positive decision of the Budget Support Steering Committee (SSC) of the European Commission's Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development in June 2021.

Also read- Hard lockdown: RMG factories to remain open, workers will walk

The EU and Germany mentioned the Bangladesh government’s establishment of Social Protection Program for Unemployed and Distressed Workers in the Ready-Made Garment (RMG), Leather goods and Footwear Industries as an important response measure.

EU Ambassador Rensje Teerink said: “We encourage the government to ensure appropriate social protection system and measures that protect those who are in need. 

“Beyond the immediate Covid-19 response, this program represents a concrete first step towards the longer-term objective to establish adequate and sustainable social security for workers addressing different risks,” he added. 

The EU and its member states are committed to support efforts to establish adequate and sustainable social security for workers, with the shared objectives to protect lives and livelihoods, Teerink further said.

German Ambassador Peter Fahrenholtz said: “We are pleased to join forces with the EU and support the Government of Bangladesh in mitigating the negative effects of the covid-19 pandemic on vulnerable workers in key export sectors like the RMG and leather sectors.

“We hope that the support will reach as many eligible workers as possible and we count on the joint efforts of the Government, the associations and the factories to achieve this,” he added.

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