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On August 16, 2016, Mastercard announced the “Mastercard Humanitarian Standard Program Interchange Rate” interchange program and rate, which is effective from April 12, 2019.

To help organizations deliver aid more cost effectively and transition to open-loop digital payment solutions, Mastercard introduced a humanitarian support program to address the delivery of digital aid via prepaid product channels.

Humanitarian aid organizations deliver billions of dollars in aid each year, typically in physical cash or in-kind goods, such as food and water. In the instance of unexpected disasters, aid organizations are the first responders, providing critically needed supplies and resources to help populations return to normal circumstances. Today, aid organizations deliver support in different forms – in-kind goods such as food and water, cash, or paper or digital vouchers. All of these forms have proven to be time consuming, costly and difficult to track.

Aid organizations have increasing requirements to distribute aid via electronic payment channels to make aid distribution faster and more efficient. In order to distribute cash-based aid via prepaid product channels, aid organizations will need to work with licensed issuers.