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Philippines Haiyan Response – A multi-sectoral review of the use of market analysis and the design and implementation of CTPs

2015 — By Isabelle Pelly, David de Wild, Camila Inarra

Following Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the Philippines on November 8 2014, at least 45 aid agencies chose to implement Cash Transfer Programming (CTP) to assist the more than 16 million people affected. Cash transfers were a logical approach in a country with developed market systems, strong financial services, and with experience of CTP in previous emergencies. The Government of the Philippines (GOP), having implemented a conditional cash programme to poor households called the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) since 2008, approved and supported the use of cash transfers as a form of assistance during the emergency response.

It has been estimated that a total of USD 338 million, or 40% of the response, was delivered through CTP. Agencies used a variety of cash modalities to respond to the emergency including Unconditional Cash Transfers (UCT), Conditional Cash Transfers (CCT), Cash for Work (CFW), vouchers and hybrid transfers (combinations of in-kind materials and cash). UCTs, vouchers and CFW were provided primarily for food assistance, whereas CCTs were provided to cover mostly shelter and livelihood needs. Due to the high volume of remittances in the country, agencies had many options to deliver cash including large banks such as LandBank, PHLPost2, pawnshops such as M LHuillier3 and rural banks; and some agencies also implemented e-transfers (e.g. Mercy Corps through Banko4).

For the first time during an emergency of this scale, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) swiftly assigned an emergency Cash Coordinator within a month as soon as the typhoon hit to strengthen coordination amongst agencies using CTP. The coordinator was able to link aid agencies to service providers, set standards and guidelines across agencies (such as transfer values) and set up regional cash working groups. However, given the novelty of this role and the geographical scale of the disaster, there was difficulty in managing and sharing information coming from different agencies, which affected timely operational coordination.

This study was jointly commissioned by Save the Children (SC) Philippines and by SCUK’s Humanitarian Technical Unit, to review SC’s use of CTP and market-based responses in the Typhoon Haiyan response. The main objectives for SC Philippines were to review the design and implementation of CTPs across the response – focusing specifically on the use of market analysis; the timing and complementarity of activities; the choice of CTP modalities; and the use of CTP as an integrated programming tool.
The objectives above contribute to SCUK’s global agenda on markets, specifically: the use of market analysis in response analysis and throughout project implementation; and evidence on the role of market-based programming in supporting market recovery. The study is also intended to contribute to learning on the design, implementation and monitoring of multi-sector CTP, and the potential Value for Money (VFM) gains of this approach.