Abu Dhabi: Work has started on Phase III of the UAE Pakistan Assistance Programme, UAE PAP, consisting of 40 projects implemented at a total cost of Dh736 million, funded by the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, ADFD.

The programme is being implemented in line with the directives of the UAE leaders. The UAE PAP announced that the projects will cover five main development areas that include roads, education, health care, water and agriculture, in addition to food assistance to the poor families and displaced people, as well anti-polio vaccination campaigns.

The projects to be executed include a 42-kilometre Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa highway, a 65-kilometre highway in Baluchistan province, construction of one college and two schools for 1,500 students in Baluchistan, and construction and fitting of a heart hospital in Quetta.

Some 29 projects will be dedicated to supplying water to villages and cities with little access to clean drinking water. The projects will also include construction of the first dates factory in Pakistan to help farmers with developing and marketing their products.

Sustainable long-term benefits

The UAE PAP’s mission is to execute development aid projects that offer sustainability and continuous benefits to beneficiaries over the long run. The programme’s first and second phases saw a total of 165 projects being implemented between 2011 and 2017, at a total cost of Dh1.5 billion.

The four infrastructure projects completed at a total cost of Dh447.4 million, include the 50-kilometre Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Road, the 72-kilometre Pak-Emirates Friendship Road, the Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Bridge and the Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Bridge.

As per the directives of President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, UAE PAP constructed four road and bridge projects worth $121 million, which included the reconstruction of two flood-destroyed bridges on Swat River and two new roads in southern and northern Waziristan. These are among the most vital projects with regard to the development of infrastructure in remote areas in Pakistan. They also help in the social, economic, educational and health development there.

In education, UAE PAP took the initiative to help Pakistan by building and equipping 60 educational projects, costing Dh152.7 million according to international standards and build proper facilities for students to study in a convenient environment.

Anti-polio drive

Meanwhile, The UAE has provided over 371.1 million units of polio vaccines to more than 57 million Pakistani children between 2014 and December 2018, through its anti-polio drive in the country, under the UAE-Pakistan Assistance Programme, UAE-PAP.

The campaign is part of the efforts to eradicate polio in the world and reflects the UAE leadership’s keenness to strengthen global efforts to reduce the spread of epidemics and prevent their impact on children.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed donated $167 million (Dh613.31 million) for the efforts aimed at eradicating poliomyelitis and the provision of vaccines for children, especially in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Abdullah Khalifa Al Gafli, Director of UAE-PAP, said the campaign administered 254.4 million doses of vaccines between 2014 and 2017 to 43 million Pakistani children. The geographical coverage of the campaign expanded in the past years to include 83 areas in four provinces of Pakistan, he added.