Over MVR 200 Million given out as Income Support Allowance in 2020

male street
Streets of Male city after the lockdown restrictions were eased. | Photo: One Online.

Male’, Maldives – The Finance Ministry of Maldives has announced that they have spent over MVR 200 Million as income support allowance to the citizens whose jobs were affected by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

According to the statistics revealed by the Finance Ministry, till 24th of December 2020, they received a total of 48,258 applications for allowances and out of that, the Ministry issued allowances to a total of 16,469 individuals and households that were eligible for the income support allowance.

The Ministry informed that they have distributed up to MVR 207.7 million as income support allowance and in just one week of December, MVR 38.9 million was disbursed for the implementation of the income support allowances in the country. Along with this, the Ministry also informed that MVR 27.4 million was also disbursed for discounts on electricity bills.

A study conducted by UNDP and the Economic Ministry found that the pandemic has affected the employment status of over 45,000 people in the Maldives.

This is why, since May 20 of this year, the government of Maldives has been giving out income support allowance under the government’s economic relief package to individuals who are not able to provide for themselves and their families, due to the negative impact on their incomes caused by the ongoing pandemic.

Such individuals who are eligible to receive income support include employees who have been terminated, put on no-pay leave or suspended from their jobs as well. The individuals who are on probation and temporary positions also meet the requirements needed to receive allowance. They also must be between the age 18 and 65 years.

According to the Ministry of Economic Development, any individual who had to undergo loss of employment or change in pay since December of 2019, may apply for the allowance and they are eligible, income support will be given at a fixed rate of MVR 5,000 per person.

On early December, President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih announced that the government will be issuing income support to those who are in need of it until the end of 2020 to ensure job continuity for Maldivians, at a time large-scale terminations and wage cuts have taken place.