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Despite aid reduction, $41m WFP funding shortage remains a tall order

By Rana Tayseer - Aug 03,2023 - Last updated at Aug 03,2023

AMMAN — The World Food Programme (WFP) still needs $41 million in funding by the end of 2023 to continue providing food aid in Jordan, the WFP announced in its monthly report.

The WFP’s operational requirements for the current year are $196.1 million to provide assistance to 465,000 beneficiaries throughout the year. The requirements between June and December of this year amount to approximately $123 million.

The funding shortage persists despite the WFP’s reduction in the amount of assistance to beneficiary refugees and the exclusion of about 50,000 people from monthly assistance.

The programme in July was forced to reduce the value of its monthly cash assistance by one-third for all 119,000 Syrian refugees in the Zaatari and Azraq camps. 

Starting in August, Syrian refugees in the camps will receive a reduced cash transfer of $21 (JD15) per person per month, down from the previous $32 (JD23).

Jordan hosts the second highest percentage of refugees per capita in the world, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). 

The quantity of refugees adds “unprecedented pressure on the budget, natural resources, infrastructure and labour market in Jordan”, UNHCR said in a previous statement.

Economist Wajdi Makhamreh told The Jordan Times on Thursday that stopping food support for refugees will shift a “great burden” onto the Jordanian government.

“The issue of refugees is no longer a priority for donor organisations and some countries in light of their preoccupation with other matters, such as the Russia-Ukraine war,” Makhamreh said.

 

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