Business proposes to introduce non-cash payment for meals in schools
Since 2019, businesses are focusing more on the development of cashless technologies in educational institutions. During the COVID-19 pandemic, this issue has become critical as cash is among the top 10 means through which viral infections are transmitted.
In May 2020, the European Business Association addressed the Ministry of Education and Science and the Ministry of Health with proposals to introduce cashless technologies as an alternative payment method for meals in all educational institutions, as currently, this possibility is available only in some of them.
In early July 2020, the business met with representatives of the Ministry of Education and Science and the Ministry of Health to discuss this initiative. The proposal was supported, so the community received an invitation to join the Working Group on Improving School Nutrition, established based on the Ministry for Development of Economy, Trade, and Agriculture. At the end of July, there was a meeting between the business and representatives of the project team of the First Lady of Ukraine – Olena Zelenska, Ministry of Education and Science, Ministry of Health and Ministry for Development of Economy, Trade and Agriculture. During the meeting, the experts shared their experience in implementing non-cash payment projects in Ukrainian schools.
The EBA member companies already have experience in the successful implementation of projects for the development of non-cash payment infrastructure in Ukrainian schools. For example, it is currently possible to pay cashless for set lunches and buffet products alternatively to a cash payment in about 390 schools. So, we are aspiring to provide such a possibility in all educational institutions. Besides, cashless is currently a secure, fast, and reliable means of payment, which provides a transparent mechanism for financial reporting and minimizes shadow schemes.
Therefore, it is important to consolidate this initiative at the national level. Thus, measures on reforming the school nutrition system were approved by the CMU Order of August 5.
According to the previously reached agreements, the EBA Electronic Payments Committee experts take part in the development of the following draft regulations which will be approved in 2020:
- rules and procedures for organisation of school nutrition;
- procurement methodologies for organizing nutrition in educational institutions.
The business community welcomes the willingness of public authorities to engage in an open dialogue to improve the nutrition system in Ukrainian schools considering proposals from the business. We hope that by the end of 2020, every child in any school will be able to pay cashless for the meal if necessary.
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