Monday, July 27, 2015

Love your neighbor

The UAE has provided Egypt with a total of Dh47.3 billion in humanitarian and development aid between 1971 and 2014, with Dh29 billion in 2013 and 2014 alone, Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Co-operation and Development, MICAD, said. 

In a statement to the Egyptian Arabic-language newspaper Algomhuria, she stressed that the UAE's generous support for Egypt in the past decades was in response to the aspirations of the Egyptian people and in implementation of the foundations of political, economic and developmental stability to provide Egyptians with a dignified life in times of distress.

The minister stressed that the UAE's support for Egypt is based on the approach followed by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the country's founding father, who always underlined the importance of backing the security and stability of Egypt in recognition of its status, culture, rich human and developmental resources and achievements throughout history.

This support, she added, is even more important during turbulence that impedes progress and stability, in particular in the case of Egypt, a brother of the UAE and all other Arab countries.

Stressing that the exemplary ties between the UAE and Egypt should serve as a role model for intra-Arab relations, Al Qasimi said relations with Egypt represent a pillar of the UAE's policy on Arab countries, as well as its regional and international policy.

She noted that the UAE was the world's largest donor country of official development assistance.

Although it is an oil-rich country, supporting renewable energy projects at home and in several developing countries is part of the UAE's overseas aid programme.

Sheikha Lubna said the UAE recognised the fact that traditional energy resources such as oil will certainly be depleted one day and is decreasing dependence on oil and expanding renewable energy projects as part of its commitments to environmental preservation.

Minister Al Qasimi noted that although it is a young state established only 44 years ago, the UAE came on top of a global list of donors to development projects abroad in 2013 and 2014. She said the UAE's humanitarian compassion derives from the Islamic traditions and values upheld by the sheikhs and people of the country.

Al Qasimi quoted the late Sheikh Zayed who once said, "Foreign aid and assistance is one of the basic pillars of our foreign policy. For we believe that there is no true benefit for us from the wealth that we have unless it does not also reach those in need, wherever they may be, and regardless of their nationality or beliefs. That is why we have ensured that our brothers and our friends have shared in our wealth." –End-

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