Since its foundation in 1971, the UAE has provided vast foreign aid to boost economic growth in developing nations and provide basic social services. Image Credit: WAM

Marrakech: The UAE has announced it will participate in funding the Poverty Reduction and Growth Trust (PRGT), allocating US$200 million (Dh735 million), within its efforts to expand concessional financing for low-income countries. This aligns with the UAE's unwavering efforts to realise the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goal 1 (SDG 1) - no poverty - alongside other challenges that the world's nations must unite to address for a better and more sustainable future.

Mohamed bin Hadi Al Hussaini, Minister of State for Financial Affairs, announced the UAE's initiative during the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC) Meeting, organised on the sidelines of the World Bank Group (WBG)-International Monetary Fund (IMF) Annual Meetings. The UAE is participating in the WBG-IMF Annual Meetings, convened in Marrakesh, Morocco, on October 9-15.

Al Hussaini said: "Under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and the guidance of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the UAE is committed to realising the UN SDGs by all means possible. This includes contributing to trust funds, which falls within the UAE's strategy and vision for cooperation and coordination with regional and international development organizations and institutions. This bolsters development projects and enhances the benefits gained from provided projects, services and funding mechanisms, while reaffirming the UAE's commitment to backing international humanitarian initiatives."

Al Hussaini added that holding the WBG-IMF Annual Meetings in Africa, for the first time in nearly 50 years, is a historic opportunity to address issues related to development with more than 189 nations in attendance. This aligns with the UAE's endeavor to reiterate its commitment to Africa, foreign aid, reducing poverty, and promoting peace and prosperity. Since its foundation in 1971, the UAE has provided vast foreign aid to boost economic growth in developing nations and provide basic social services. It leads the list of donors in terms of official development assistance given compared to its GDP. He said: "The history of UAE's foreign aid began with its foundation. It is now a vital financial, commercial and logistical hub for the Middle East, Africa and South Asia, thus linking its economy to those nations' economies."

Founded in January 2010, PRGT addresses the challenges facing low-income countries. It is a key IMF vehicle that provides concessional funding (currently at zero interest) to low-income countries, which are facing high inflation, persistent food insecurity, increasing debt risks, and high borrowing costs. The IMF has responded by amplifying interest-free lending through PRGT to assist the poorest and most vulnerable member states in navigating this difficult environment. There are 69 nations that are eligible to receive funding from PRGT.