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ADFD Contributes AED2.5 Billion to Education Sector

Abu Dhabi,27 Jan 2019

Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), the leading national entity for international development aid, has financed 129 development projects in the education sector with a total value of AED2.5 billion. Benefiting 14 developing countries, these projects have contributed to achieving the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Through building capabilities and imparting knowledge, the education sector plays an integral role in driving growth in key socio-economic sectors. Therefore, the Fund’s steadfast commitment to the sector supports developing countries in achieving their development priorities.

An ADFD report, issued to mark International Day of Education that falls on 24 January, reveals that in the last 10 years, the Fund financed the establishment of more than 40 schools in several developing countries to increase education levels and help eradicate illiteracy. It has also provided funds to 35 universities and colleges for building construction and renovation, as well as upgrades of infrastructure, equipment and processes in line with international standards.

His Excellency Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of ADFD, said: “The financing of development projects in the education sector is a key priority for ADFD. The sector is crucial to developing countries, as it helps qualify future cadres, promote talent growth, drive sustainable development and ensure national self-sufficiency in the long run.”

He added: “Today, as we mark International Day of Education, it is important to note that since the 1970s, the Fund has taken a keen interest in financing education projects, including the construction of schools, universities, colleges and technical training centres.

These projects have contributed to building the capacities of millions of people in developing countries, enabling them to live more prosperous and fulfilling lives.”

In closing, he said: “To help achieve SDG 4, ADFD is proud to join forces with the international community to provide quality education for all – regardless of gender, religion, geographic location or economic status.”

As part of its efforts to support sustainable development in key socio-economic sectors, ADFD has funded multiple vital education projects. Notable projects include:

Public Universities Development Programme – Jordan
ADFD allocated AED466 million to a programme that includes the development and upgrade of nine public universities. The scope involves the construction of faculty buildings, auditoriums, laboratories, power generating stations with a focus on solar energy, and water desalination plants. The Fund is also financing the provision of state-of-the-art equipment to modernise the universities’ facilities and enhance the learning experience of their students.

Building New Schools – Jordan
The AED124 million project aims to build 30 new schools featuring modern science laboratories and state-of-the-art educational equipment to cater to the growing number of students and create an engaging learning environment in line with international best practices. The schools will contribute to enhancing the education sector in Jordan.

Advancing Technical Education in Community Colleges – Jordan
ADFD’s AED33 million funding initiative has enhanced the receiving capacity of community colleges, expanded their technical and applied science education programmes, and provided the latest equipment for laboratories and workshops.

Mohammed VI University Hospital in Marrakesh – Morocco
Abu Dhabi government grant worth AED239 million helped purchase equipment for the 916-bed Mohammed VI University Hospital in Marrakesh, a specialist medical complex that spans 8.8 hectares.

Training Colleges – Pakistan
In line with the Pakistani government’s development goals, ADFD has played a crucial role in advancing the country’s education sector. The Fund managed an AED46 million grant that financed the construction of three training colleges in remote areas – Warsak College in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, and Wana College and Spinkai Cadet College, both located in South Waziristan.

Sheikh Zayed International Academy – Pakistan
Sheikh Zayed International Academy (SZIA) is one of the largest educational institutions in the capital Islamabad. Leveraging ADFD’s funding of AED14 million in 2009, SZIA has built up a reputation for its international curriculum, high academic standards, efficient administration and diverse extracurricular activities.

Construction of Three Universities – Zambia 
ADFD provided AED37 million to finance the construction of three universities in Zambia. Catering to diverse academic disciplines, including mathematics, sciences and arts, the universities aim to increase higher education opportunities in the country in line with the Zambia Vision 2030.

Supporting education programmes – Palestine
In coordination with the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, ADFD administered a grant of AED42 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). The funding supported the provision of education for Palestinian refugee children. Benefitting around 15,000 refugee children in 14 schools in the Gaza strip, the grant helped provide education programmes.