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Abu Dhabi Fund for Development Finances 17 Projects Worth AED5.6 Billion in 2016

Abu Dhabi,25 May 2017

Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) continued to deliver an outstanding performance in 2016. Furthermore, the Fund managed 17 development projects valued at AED5.6 billion across seven beneficiary countries, dispensed AED3.9 billion in concessionary loans to support four projects and AED1.7 billion in government grants to finance 13 projects.

Headlining a press conference at the ADFD headquarters to announce the annual results for 2016, His Excellency Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of ADFD, pointed out that from its inception in 1971 till end-2016, ADFD’s total development funding and investment portfolio registered AED80 billion, with the number of beneficiary countries reaching 83. Of this amount, concessionary loans totalled AED35 billion, while UAE government grants accounted for AED42 billion. ADFD’s company and private equity fund investments amounted to an estimated AED3 billion.

In contrast, ADFD’s development funding in 2015 recorded AED1.9 billion, of which AED1.2 billion comprised government grants, and AED700 million was expended as concessionary loans. By end-2015, aggregate development funding and investments constituted AED76 billion expended across 78 countries.

His Excellency Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi said: “The Fund carries out its sustainable development programmes that have supported tens of thousands of projects to date in line with the directives of the UAE President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the guidance of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and the counsel of His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of ADFD’s Board of Directors.”

He added: “In 2016, ADFD excelled in forging new strategic partnerships with international stakeholders, most notably the International Center for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA) and the Lives and Livelihoods Fund (LLF). These synergies underpin the Fund’s efforts in administering long-term development programmes and projects.”

ADFD supports a variety of sectors, such as infrastructure, education, health, housing, transport, irrigation, agriculture and renewable energy, which directly improve the lives of millions of people in beneficiary countries.

A report by the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) named the UAE the top world aid donor in the field of official development assistance (ODA) for 2016. The country also attained the number one slot in 2013 and 2014. In this context, His Excellency Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi highlighted the role ADFD and other leading national entities have played in this success.

He said: “This achievement demonstrates the commitment of the UAE leadership towards development aid and its unwavering dedication to playing an active role in achieving the United Nations’ sustainable development goals (SDGs). Furthermore, it testifies to the country’s success in helping people across developing countries attain their socio-economic objectives and supporting them in overcoming challenges.”

Having received a total of AED13.2 billion across 87 projects, the transport sector claimed a majority share of ADFD’s funding – 18 per cent – over the last 45 years. Furthermore, the Fund spent AED9.7 billion on financing 91 projects in the health and social services sector, representing almost 13 per cent of the total expenditure. Approximately 10 percent of the funds – AED7.6 billion – went to 92 strategic projects within the water and electricity sector.

The Fund expended nine per cent on the housing sector, having implemented 45 community housing projects worth an estimated AED7.3 billion. The agriculture, irrigation and land reclamation sector accounted for nine per cent of the total funds – AED6.7 billion – across 56 projects. The remaining 36 per cent was allocated across a number of projects in various sectors.

By end-2016, ADFD channelled 76 per cent of its funding to Arab countries, having financed 339 development projects valued at AED58 billion. Amounting to six percent of the total funds, Asian countries received AED4.6 billion in development finance across 66 projects. African countries were the recipients of AED3.3 billion across 74 projects, making up four per cent of the funding. Furthermore, 14 per cent, approximately AED10.7 million was utilised to fund 18 projects in other geographic locations particularly, Latin America and Europe.

It is worth mentioning that in 2016, the Fund continued to strengthen its partnerships with international financial institutions that have contributed to enhancing its leadership role in assisting beneficiary countries and supporting socio-economic development, one of which is the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). Moreover, January 2017 marked the completion of the fourth funding cycle of the ADFD/IRENA Project Facility that seeks to financially support the renewable energy sector to the tune of US$350 million over seven funding cycles. To date, the facility approved US$189 million for use across 19 renewable energy developments. Currently generating about 100 megawatts of energy, the initiative’s projects have enhanced hundreds of thousands of lives.

Finally, ADFD continues to support Pacific Island countries in fulfilling their growing energy demands from renewable sources through the US$50 million (AED184 million) UAE-Pacific Partnership Fund. 2016 witnessed the launch of operations on five projects in the Solomon Islands, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Palau and Micronesia.