UAE and Ethiopia discuss more avenues to enhance cooperation
Mohamed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), received at the Fund’s headquarters Suleiman Dedefo, Ambassador of Ethiopia to the UAE. Senior officials from both sides were present at the meeting.
The two sides discussed bilateral relations and means of developing them, especially through the Fund’s support to the Ethiopian government to achieve sustainable development goals by financing development and investment projects.
Al Suwaidi emphasised the Fund’s commitment to supporting Ethiopia in its developmental efforts, noting that the visit presented an opportunity to discuss issues of common interest.
The meeting was part of the continuous coordination, particularly over the Fund’s support to the Ethiopian government to achieve its economic objectives.
Dedefo expressed appreciation for the UAE, as well as ADFD, for supporting his country in its effort to achieve sustainable developmental goals and economic priorities.
He pointed out that the role the Fund played in his country’s development underscored the UAE’s invaluable contributions to the rest of the world in terms of sustainable development.
The Abu Dhabi Fund pays special attention to developing countries, especially in the African continent, where its projects have led to economic progression and improvement in the standard of living.
The Fund has been actively contributing to Ethiopia’s socioeconomic wellbeing since 2012, when it financed two projects worth Dhs119.4 million.
Earlier a delegation from Bahrain arrived in Abu Dhabi aboard an operational test flight following the completion of a project to build a new passenger terminal at Bahrain International Airport (BIA).
The facility has been expanded with a funding of Dhs3.7 billion ($1 billion) from Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, one of the UAE’s leading financial institutions.
The Fund facilitated the project on behalf of the UAE, which extended Dhs9.1 billion ($2.5 billion) to Bahrain in 2013 as part of its commitment to the GCC Development Programme.
Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi received the delegation that included Kamal Bin Mohammed, Minister of Transport and Communications and Zayed Bin Rashid Al Zayani, Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism.
The new terminal marked the completion of the first phase of the airport modernisation project that aims to stimulate Bahrain’s economic growth in line with the country’s Economic Vision 2030 by raising the airport’s strategic importance.
Commenting on the project, Al Suwaidi said that the new facility marked a strong start to comprehensive development initiatives undertaken in Bahrain. He underscored the UAE leadership’s commitment and support to the country in its effort to bolster the economy and promote sustainable development. He pointed out that ADFD, in cooperation with the Bahraini government, had financed many projects in strategic sectors, such as housing, water, health and transport.
Kamal highlighted the strong bilateral relations, praising the UAE for its contributions and commitment to developing strategic sectors in his country.
He noted that such gestures underscored mutual trust and commitments on which the relations between two countries were founded.
Saying that visit was undertaken to express Bahrain’s appreciation for the UAE and ADFD, he also expressed gratitude to ADFD for facilitating crucial development projects in the country, calling the entity a key strategic partner in Bahrain’s development effort.
“The airport expansion project will greatly benefit the Bahraini economy and enhance the role of its services sector, which is a priority economic sector for Bahrain to establish itself as a regional logistical hub,” Kamal said.
The project includes many associated projects, including 5,500 carparks, two receptions, hospitality lounges for first and business class travellers, a building dedicated to private aviation, in addition to a central security gate, a building for fire and rescue services, an area for Duty Free outlets that is four times that of the current area, as well as an aircraft fuelling area. In addition, the new terminal houses a hotel that offers a variety of accommodation options.
The terminal is the largest green facility in Bahrain that has earned a Gold Certification from Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design (LEED), an internationally recognised green building certification system.
Bahrain is one of the first countries where ADFD undertook development activities in 1974. The Fund has financed 29 projects worth Dhs19.5 billion in various sectors to drive sustainable socioeconomic development in the country. The number of projects funded and completed by the Fund in 2020 – covering the renewable energy sector – reached 16 projects, amounting to Dhs622.6 million.
The Fund completed five crucial renewable energy projects in five partner countries, including Cuba, Somaliland, the Bahamas, Barbados, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.