Opening remarks at 2017 Arab-DAC Dialogue on Development

27.03.2017 | Bern, Switzerland

Opening statement of OFID Director-General Suleiman J Al-Herbish at the 2017 Arab-DAC Dialogue on Development in Bern, Switzerland


Excellency Ms. Charlotte Gornitzka, Chair of OECD Development Assistance Committee; Excellency Mr. Manuel Sager, Director-General, Ambassador of Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation; Distinguished Representatives and members of OECD/DAC; Distinguished Representatives of the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation; Our colleagues Heads and Representatives of the Arab Coordination Group:

Ladies and Gentlemen, Good Morning. It is indeed great pleasure to address you all on behalf of the Arab Coordination Group to our seventh joint meeting of the OECD/DAC and the Arab Coordination Group. I would like to extend our thanks and gratitude to Mr. Manuel Sager, the Director General of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation for his kind invitation to host our meeting this year in the beautiful city of Bern.

I also take this opportunity to greet and congratulate Ms. Charlotte Gornitzka for her appointment as Chairperson of the OECD/DAC, wishing her all success. I trust that our Cooperation will continue to march towards more concrete achievements. Please allow me to take this opportunity to thank Mr Erik Solheim, for his diligent work and keen partnership during his assignment as a Chairperson.

Ladies and Gentlemen, The Cooperation between our institutions and DAC members has started since the establishment of the Arab Institutions more than 40 years ago at both multilateral and bilateral levels. In 2009 the two groups have further strengthened their cooperation and started regular constructive consultations for the benefit and support of developing countries.

During our last meeting which OFID hosted in Vienna, in January 2016 we addressed ways and means to strengthen partnership and cooperation towards achieving the targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. We agreed to further upscale our engagement in supporting the effective implementation of the 2030 Agenda. We recognized the importance of mobilizing more financial tools and resources, domestic and international, public and private.

We also, emphasised the need to address the countries in fragile settings highlighting education and establishing a taskforce in that respect. We also commended the efforts of the taskforce on Energy and agreed to broaden its membership and expand its activities.

Ladies and Gentlemen: The cumulative combined assistance provided by the members of Arab Coordination Group reached around 175 billion U.S. Dollars, by end of June 2016. In this context and in line with the group declaration on the 2030 Development Agenda, the ACG upscaled its financing to partner countries which reached around 29 billion U.S. Dollars during 2015/2016, directed to financing 844 projects in 104 developing countries with emphasis on alleviation of poverty in low-income countries.

We also recognize that our partners at OECD / DAC are taking serious measures in upscaling their contribution in all forms; finance as well as, knowledge, technical assistance and capacity building.

Our meeting today is geared towards accelerating the momentum of our collaboration in supporting the developing countries to achieve their SDGs.

Ladies and Gentlemen: In our meeting today we will debate:
  • Adjusting Development Co-operation Tools to Ensure Sustainable Development.
  • Good practices on implementing effective development Co-operation.
  • Promoting joint action on education in fragile settings.
  • And will review the Progress of the Taskforce on Energy.
I look forward to fruitful discussions from all of you. Thank you.