1.4 million poor pensioners in this Middle East country have something to smile about with new 50 percent increase policy
The 50 percent increase is supposed to in part target elderly pensioners who comprise a significant percentage of the nearly 1.4 million poor families eligible for the new benefits (Courtesy of the Los Angeles Times)
Egypt’s cabinet has approved a 50 percent increase to social security pensions, which will benefit about 1.4 million poor families.
After the new rise, the minimum social security pension will stand at around LE325 ($46.68) per family per month, while the maximum reaches LE450 ($64.63) per family, according to Mamdouh Al Fakahani, the head of the social protection department at the ministry of social solidarity.
Al Fakahani told Ahram Online on Saturday that the pensions’ values vary according to the number of family members.
"There is an additional sum of LE200 ($28.73) to families that include members going through education phases," he added.
The decision is expected to come into effect this month and will cost the government roughly LE5.5 billion ($790.2 million) from the state budget, Al Fakahani said.
Families elible for these pensions are those whose members are unable to work or have no source of income, according to Egyptian law.
In February 2013, the government of ousted president Mohamed Morsi approved a 33 percent increase to social security pensions but the decision had not been implemented.