ADFD organises workshop on financing development - GulfToday

ADFD organises workshop on financing development


Officials during the event.

Business Bureau, Gulf Today

Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), the leading national entity for international development aid, hosted a workshop entitled ‘Development Financing’ to share best practices among leading funding institutions and discuss ways to overcome funding challenges in developing countries.

The event drew the participation of representatives of local and international entities, including the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre.

Held at the ADFD headquarters in Abu Dhabi, the session focused on raising awareness of existing financing mechanisms in developing countries and examined the sustainable development funding methods of the participating financial entities. The event also served as a platform to exchange experiences in managing development projects.

Speaking on the occasion, Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of ADFD, said: “This specialised workshop highlighted the efforts of the participating entities to improve the standards of living in developing countries. I am confident that the learning session will boost coordination and cooperation with our partners from the ranks of regional and international financial institutions.” He added: “ADFD is one of the leading development stakeholders focused on building partnerships to assist developing countries in addressing the socio-economic challenges they face. To achieve this priority, we must all work together to introduce innovative financing initiatives and mechanisms that help achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”

At the workshop, ADFD presented an overview of its strategy, development funding, investments, and its upcoming national export financing programme. In line with the UAE Vision 2021 and Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, the programme seeks to support the UAE national economy and enhance its competitiveness through expanding the range of export products and commodities.

Since its inception in 1971, ADFD has financed development projects and investments to the tune of Dhs92 billion in more than 90 countries around the world through concessionary loans and grants from the Abu Dhabi government.

Abu Dhabi Fund for Development is a national organisation owned by the Abu Dhabi government. Established in 1971, its purpose is to help emerging countries by providing concessionary loans to finance sustainable development projects alongside other long-term investments and direct contributions.

In addition, the Fund manages government grants offered by the Abu Dhabi government and monitors the course of the relevant projects. To date, it has invested around Dhs92 billion in development projects across 90 countries.

Along with its core operations, ADFD’s innovative partnerships with the private sector and international funding institutions have helped consolidate the UAE’s prominent status among global foreign aid providers. The Fund’s support for socio-economic development in developing countries over the past four and a half decades, especially in the last five years, has significantly contributed to the UAE retaining the prestigious title of the world’s top donor of official development assistance relative to national income between 2013 and 2017. This endorsement was reported by the Development Assistance Committee of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Focusing on key socio-economic sectors, including health, education, housing, water, irrigation, agriculture and renewable energy, ADFD’s development funding seeks to support the national priorities of beneficiary countries, bolster sustainable economic development, improve standards of living and drive the implementation of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Moreover, ADFD holds equity stakes in numerous companies and private equity funds. Serving various key sectors, these investments play a crucial role in driving economic development and job creation in beneficiary countries. To date, the Fund has invested in 13 companies and 4 private equity funds across Africa, Europe, and Asia. ADFD has also adopted a policy of financing UAE private sector investments. To enhance competitiveness and enable investment opportunities, the policy aims to lay the foundations and guidelines for providing funding for national private sector investments in the UAE and abroad.

In addition, ADFD has amended its tendering system to give 10 per cent preference to national companies that pass the technical assessment and financial qualification stage outlined in the Fund’s tender policy for grant projects. Over the last 10 years, its efforts have facilitated business deals worth Dhs16.5 billion for UAE companies to implement ADFD-funded projects in developing countries.

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