|Newsletter January - July 2011|
Foreword by the Resident Representative
Since 1965, the United Nations Development Programme acted as a major development partner to the Government of Saudi Arabia with a multitude of projects, across many practice areas, always based along the nation’s development needs. UNDP has across the years been the number one partner to Saudi Arabia in the formulation of its national development plans. UNDP’s strong partnership with both the government and civil society stems from the fact that is a knowledge-based organization capable of tapping into its Global Development Network in support of Human Development and the MDGs.
2010 proved to be a continued success for UNDP and Saudi Arabia as partners in their eﬀorts to achieve the Mil-lennium Development Goals (MDGs) and other Internationally Agreed Development Goals (IADG). UNDP has worked in over 190 countries in various contexts from Least Developed Countries and Middle-Income Countries to Net Contributing Countries such as Saudi Arabia. UNDP operations are anchored in the development priorities and plans of programme countries. National ownership constitutes the foundation of our work. Provisions of policy advice, technology transfer and capacity development throughout the years contributed to the success of several projects that were implemented by the government with the support of UNDP at the national and local levels. All efforts aiming to assist the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the implementation of the coun¬try’s long term vision for development.
UNDP is eager to support the country in its plans towards economic diversification, supporting regional balance and specialization, spread benefits of growth, infrastructure and access to public services across the country. Expanded trade and foreign direct investment are viewed as a preferred way of achieving economic diversification, improving competitiveness and providing jobs. UNDP thus strives to support new capacities for expansion of knowledge economy and service sector including tourism and IT. It will continue its support to achieve a sustainable development and stands ready to support new capacities for energy conservation and renewable energy; new technologies and policies and centers of excellence for research and development. UNDP’s forte lies in the vast experience it has globally in terms of providing in-depth analysis of environmental vulnerability and risks particularly as related to issues of climate change, water and waste, and the elaboration of strategies to develop sustainability measures. Social empowerment, support to national development plans and policies including macro-economic planning, monitoring indicator systems linked to MDGs reporting and National HDRs through urban observatories have also been the backbone of our work on the ground in KSA. A recent contribution of UNDP in Saudi Arabia has been our assistance in the formulation of the rural development strategy and sustainable social service provision as well as the development of youth capabilities and capacities to implement National Youth Strategy and women economic empowerment
This newsletter was prepared by the UNDP in Saudi Arabia Country Office to highlight UNDP achievements and latest news. Our aim is to familiarize our partners, counterparts and the public with current development issues with emphasis on UNDP’s support to overcome challenges. Fi¬nally, UNDP’s efforts have been and will be dedicated to ensure sustainable develop¬ment in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Dr. Riyad Musa
Amat Alsoswa Visit to the Kingdom
Ms. Amat Alsoswa, Assistant Secretary General/ Assistant Administrator, Director for Arab States, UNDP visited the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Ms. Alsoswa met with UNDP Team, at the UN House in Riyadh, DQ. On her visit she also met with H.E. Khalid Algosaibi, the Minister of Economy and Planning. In her meeting Ms. Alsoswa mentioned that UNDP is working on a new programme on development issues mainly youth & unemployment, women’s empowerment & economic diversification. She called upon the MOEP to engage in this new regional programme. Ms. Alsoswa also met with H.E. Mr. Yousef Al Saadoun, Deputy Minister for Economic and Cultural Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The purpose of her visit was to participate in the center’s Board of Trustees Meeting which took place in AGFUND in Riyadh on Tuesday the 24th of May 2011.
Ms. Alsoswa with Dr. Riyad Musa UNRC, UNDP RR
Gulf Environment Forum
Gulf Environment Forum is the first all encompassing regional environmental forum Hosted by Presidency of Meteorology and Environment t in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. This is UNDP’s second participation in GEF. The event took place in Jeddah Hilton Hotel, during 29-31 May 2011.
UNDP served as a supporting organization and gave presentations on Integrated Water Resource Management and on Environmental Sustainability.
UNDP was present at the exhibit of the event, giving brief presentations to GEF visitors and other exhibitors about environmental sustainability projects UNDP is working on with the Government of Saudi Arabia.
This prestigious forum and exhibition brought international clients across all environmental sectors for a chance to exchange ideas and discuss solutions for a cleaner and brighter future.
The full three days event brought together Business Development Managers, CEOs/Managing Directors, Purchasers/Decision Makers, Investors/Entrepreneur, and Government Representative from Air & Climate, Energy & Renewable, and Health & Safety sectors. Environmental Management, Monitoring & Testing, Soil & Groundwater, Sustainable Development, Waste & Recycling, Waste & Water, discussing possibilities and sharing knowledge, global experience and latest researches to ensure environmental sustainability in the future for the Kingdom and other countries in the region.
Campaign to fight HIV-related stigma and discrimination in the workplace
Collaborative project shows "One Day on Earth"
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) staff members in more than 100 countries worldwide took part in a collaborative film project to document the work of UNDP for many, this was their first time using a video camera. The result of their collaborative efforts is an 8 minute film highlighting the breath of UNDP’s impact.
It offers a glimpse into the daily operations of country offices across the globe, showcasing what UNDP does and how it manages its global partnerships. The film also highlights the diversity of cultures with which UNDP works and emphasizes the particular UN priority issues and Millennium Development Goals that UNDP addresses. The finished product, entitled “One Day on Earth,” takes on the form of a collage, capturing unprecedented video snapshots from every country on earth in a 24-hour period.
In total, 16,000 filmmakers from over 190 countries helped to document the countless stories of triumph, tragedy, hope and fear that take place in the world each day. Currently, the “One Day on Earth” initiative is producing a feature-length documentary that will be released later this year. The initiative has also created an unprecedented video archive, which is available to the entire community of film contributors. The archive can be accessed via a searchable Geo-tagged online map at: http://archive.onedayonearth.org. In order to ensure widespread participation in the filming process, the “One Day on Earth” initiative donated 120 high definition (HD) cameras to UNDP staff in various countries, including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, South Sudan and Venezuela. The filmmakers also received logistical support from their local and regional UNDP offices, including video data collection in areas of low bandwidth.
“The value of international media collaborations is not only in creating an expansive snapshot and new perspective, but also in establishing a shared project for the world to embrace and have fun with,” stated Brandon Litman, co-founder and Executive Producer of “One Day on Earth.”
On 11 November, 2011 (11.11.11), UNDP will again participate in this global filming project. The film is now published on YouTube and Vimeo as well as on UNDP website.
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia provides US$ 5.39 million to support Internally Displaced Persons in Pakistan
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has provided US$ 5,397,300 to the United Nations Development Programme to support the agency relief efforts for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Pakistan. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed on Monday 2nd May 2011 at the Headquarters of the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) between the Fund and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), according to which a US $ 5,397,300 relief grant will be offered to the agency to be used for community infrastructure restoration and rehabilitation in 6 tehsils of District Swat including Babozai, Charbagh, Kabal, Khwazakhela, Matta Kharari and Matta Sebujni.
On Behalf of SFD, H.E. Yousef Ibrahim Al-Bassam, Vice Chairman & Managing Director signed the MOU with Dr. Riyad Musa Al-Ahmad, United Nations Resident Coordinator and Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme, in Riyadh, who signed on behalf of UNDP.
The infrastructure restoration and rehabilitation project includes about 279 Km of link roads, 98Km village streets, 122 small bridges, 199 culverts, and 168 channels.
This is a timely and important contribution which is a testimony of the gesture of solidarity of the people and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with the people and government of Pakistan at this difficult time.
MDGs in Saudi Arabia
UNDP Saudi Arabia Country Office produced a public service announcement (PSA) on MDGs to raise awareness on MDGs among Saudi youth. The MDGs PSA can be viewed through UNDP Saudi Arabia website , YouTube and Vimeo . Saudi Youth’s development and wellbeing is a cornerstone for the Saudi Arabia’s achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) which are:
1. Eradicate Extreme Poverty
2. Achieve Universal Primary Education
3. Promote Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women
4. Reduce Child Morality
5. Improve Maternal Health
6. Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and other Diseases
7. Ensure Environmental Sustainability
8. Develop a Global Partnership for the Cause of Development
The MDGs are meant to help implement the Millennium Declaration, which was signed by world leaders including Arab Leaders at the UN Millennium Summit in year 2000. World Leaders have pledged to achieve these 8 goals by year 2015. In light of this, UNDP aims at engaging the Arab Youth in this development process. We want them to take part in every development initiative. We ultimately want them to feel the responsibility they have and the crucial role they can play in making their nation a highly developed one, which in return will positively and remarkably affect their own lives and wellbeing.
Women Empowerment in Saudi Arabia
Executive Board of the United Nations Development Programme and of the United Nations Population Fund approved UNDP’s new Country Programme (2012-2016)
The Executive Board of the United Nations Development Programme and of the United Nations Population Fund has approved UNDP’s new Country Programme Document (CPD), (2012-2016).
The Country Programme is a document signed between UNDP country offices and host governments, setting out development priorities and approaches that UNDP will pursue over a three to four year period. It is intended to support effective programming, allowing UNDP to focus its efforts and plan its interventions according to both national priorities and UNDP’s own areas of expertise.
The programme is aligned to the National Development Plan of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, UNDP Strategic Plan and evaluation recommendations. The CPD has three outcomes on socio-economic and institutional reform, environmental sustainability and sustainable development and three cross-cutting priorities: capacity development; global partnerships and gender mainstreaming. In all areas UNDP partners with specialized agencies and centers of excellence like DESA, FAO, ILO, OHCHR, etc.
The approved programme emphasize on social empowerment and institutional strengthening with a focus on Youth. And capacities of the charity societies and social institutions concerned with the issues of the poor and persons of special needs the new CPD aims at achieving enhanced policies and strategies for sustainable use of natural resources and the environment with a focus on energy conservation and renewable energy. The new CPD is focused also on resource management, biodiversity, natural heritage, and eco-tourism. Sustainable development mainstreamed across the economy is a main focus in the new CPD as well, aiming to enhance capacities for development planning and public administration and development of a knowledge economy.
It is worth mentioning that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia provides Government Cost-Sharing resources for all programming, coupled with Trust Funds and donor and private sector contributions in consultation with Government. All programme development is undertaken with Government and programmes implemented via National Implementation modality, with 5-7% management fee and provision of Implementation Support Services. All programmes follow Programme Board and outcome evaluations etc per UNDP POPP and transactions are compliant with standard POPP rules and regulations. UNDP undertakes evaluations per Evaluation Plan alongside NIM audits. With regards availability of data, cooperation will enhance statistical capacities for effective Monitoring & Evaluation.
Regional Strategy, UNDP Response Strategy to Transformative Change in the Arab Region
The challenges facing the Arab countries at this juncture lie at the crossroads of governance and development. In response UNDP has drafted a strategy that provides the framework within which it will offer to accompany the Arab societies in their process of transformation.
As highlighted in the strategy, the immediate response of UNDP aims at supporting processes and institutions of dynamic transition. This support includes: fostering inclusive national dialogue on key transition processes, consensus-building on key reforms and the development of integrated policy frameworks. Technical assistance and advice of UNDP shall ensure that political reform is carried out in a context of expanding economic opportunity, especially for youth. Furthermore, the efforts of UNDP shall ensure that any restructuring of justice and security apparatuses provide opportunities to develop capacities for increasing fulfillment of human rights. The strategy also covers areas such as constitutional reform and capacity development.
The strategy outlines the key areas of UNDP support on the short and medium terms which focus on deepening democratic governance by fostering the emergence of responsive and accountable institutions and promoting inclusive growth, job creation and human development.
UNDP is the UN’s global development network, advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life. We are on the ground in 166 countries, working with them on their own solutions to global and national development challenges. As they develop local capacity, they draw on the people of UNDP and our wide range of partners. for more information on UNDP lease visit: www.undp.org
UNDP has been in Saudi Arabia since 1965, providing assistance to help the Kingdom achieve its development goals. Current collaboration focuses on policy support for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, economic diversification, trade and investment planning, urban planning, environmental sustainability and public administration reform, and strategies for youth development. for more information on UNDP Saudi Arabia please visit www.undp.org.sa
For more information contact:
May Al-Faraj, Public Relations and Knowledge Management –
UNDP Saudi Arabia