The IPC-IG hosts Ugandan delegation for knowledge exchange in Social Protection
Members of the Government of the Republic of Uganda visited Brazil to learn about the countrie's social protection system, to prepare for the implementation of the national policy framework, 'Vision 2040'
Brasilia, 2 March 2016 - ”The International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth (IPC-IG) hosted a study tour for Ugandan government officials between 22 and 26 February. The objective of the visit was to prepare the group to effectively lead and promote the coordination of social protection interventions in Uganda, under the new National Social Protection Policy (NSPP).
The delegation, headed by Mr. Pius Bigirimana, permanent secretary of the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, was composed of 11 senior technicians from various ministries and international organisations interested in learning about the execution and coordination of social development programmes in Brazil, such as the Bolsa Família Programme, the Brazil without Extreme Poverty Plan, and the Single Registry of Beneficiaries.
The study visit commenced with a welcome from Mr. Niky Fabiancic, resident coordinator of the United Nations in Brazil, resident representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Director of the IPC-IG. He highlighted the importance of knowledge exchange and mutual learning between both countries and underlined his assurance that a strong partnership would be built between the IPC-IG and the Government of Uganda.
Researchers from the IPC-IG, the Brazil's Institute for Applied Economic Research (Ipea) and the Ministry of Social Development and Fight against Hunger (MDS) delivered presentations to the delegation, in sessions arranged to contextualise the Brazilian social protection system.
Such was the theme of the first presentation by Luis Henrique Paiva, associate researcher at the IPC-IG, Ipea researcher and former National Secretary of the Bolsa Família Programme. He started the week's agenda with an overview of social protection in Brazil, from its inception with the development of social insurance schemes, to its evolution to current social assistance and development programmes. Denise Direito, a general coordinator in the department of the Single Registry of the MDS, presented the Single Registry and registries for other social programmes, explaining the inter-agency integration necessary for the effective coordination of these programmes.
The pension and taxation system was the theme of the second day of meetings. Marcelo Caetano, Ipea researcher, presented the Brazilian Compulsory Social Security Contribution, which covers both public and private sector workers. Rafael Osório, IPC-IG research coordinator, spoke about Brazil's policies on non-contributory social benefits, notably the Continuous Cash Benefit (Benefício de Prestação Continuada, BPC). Rodrigo Orair, Ipea researcher and IPC-IG research associate explained how Brazil finances its social protection policies, as well as the challenges surrounding their susteinability.
The Brazil without Extreme Poverty Plan (BSM) was featured on the third day of the study visit. Raphaella Bandeira, technical advisor to the Special Secretariat for Overcoming Extreme Poverty of the MDS, provided an overview of the Plan, highlighting the Brazilian experience and the coordination of social programmes among different ministries. Fábio Veras, IPC-IG research coordinator, presented the lessons and best practices regarding Brazil's experience of poverty reduction in rural areas, especially the Food Acquisition Programme (PAA) and the National School Feeding Programme (PNAE). Marcelo Sousa, advisor to the Department of Productive Urban Inclusion of the MDS, focused on Brazil's strategy to reduce urban poverty, notably vocational training policies, such as the National Programme for Access to Technical Education and Employment (PRONATEC).
On the Bolsa Família Programme (PBF), Daniel Ximenes of the Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES), spoke about the role of inter-sectoral coordination in motoring the PBF's conditionalities, and Luis Henrique Paiva elucidated some technical details of the programme, as well as its targeting system. Lastly, Pedro Arruda, IPC-IG research associate, also gave a presentation on the Minha Casa, Minha Vida Programme, focusing on the relevance of Brazil's recent advances in housing policies for the low-income population.
Another highlight of the study tour was a presentation of the online platform, socialprotection.org, dedicated to promoting knowledge sharing and capacity building on social protection policies and programmes, based on the experience of developing countries. Alicia Spengler, Senior Project Analyst at the IPC-IG said that the online community tool could be used by those involved in the Ugandan Social Protection Strategy for discussions of an action plan following the visit, facilitating inter-sectoral dialogue, as well as be used as a mechanism to register lessons learned from the Brazilian experience during the visit.
A visit to the Social Assistance Reference Centre (CRAS) and the Specialized Social Assistance Reference Centre (CREAS) of Ceilândia, an administrative region of the Federal District of Brazil concluded the week of activities. Members of the delegation were able to see in practice how citizens access social assistance services, ask questions about the Centres' operation and meet beneficiaries of the programmes discussed during the week.
Among the main lessons learned during the visit, Mr Pius Bigirimana, head of the delegation, highlighted the political commitment of the country to reduce inequalities and vulnerabilities.
"As we develop our own social protection policy framework, there is a lot to learn from Brazil, especially concerning the inter-sectorial coordination in implementing its programmes. That is why we came with a team from different ministries and departments, because this is going to be critical as we start our own plan", he stated.
"In this sense, the Single Registry is supposed to be very useful in making sure there is coordination, there is harmonization and that we avoid duplication that may come as a result of double dipping - double counting - when a beneficiary gets a double payment", he completed.
Closing the week of activities, Rafael Osório, said it was a pleasure to receive the delegation and putting into practice the IPC-IG's mission of facilitating learning among developing countries oninnovative social policies.
"The IPC-IG is proud of our history in promoting knowledge exchange among the Global South, creating a spirit of solidarity between countries. We hope to build a strong partnership with Uganda', concluded IPC-IG's research coordinator.
By Cecília Amaral, Communications Assistant