Minister of International Cooperation, Resident Coordinator of the United Nations Chair Periodic Meeting of Steering Committee for the Partnership Development Framework with the United Nations
Minister of International Cooperation, Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, and Mr Richard Dictus, UN Resident Coordinator in Egypt chaired the periodic meeting of the Steering Committee for the Partnership Development Framework between Egypt and the United Nations for 2018-2022 at the headquarters of the Ministry of International Cooperation to review progress and chart new path for cooperation during 2020/2021. More than 40 representatives from all United Nations agencies in Egypt participated, in addition to representatives of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Justice, Education, Local Development, Agriculture, Manpower, Trade, Industry, Environment, Social Solidarity, Planning and Health, the Information and Decision Support Center in the Council of Ministers, the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics and the agency Small and medium enterprises development, as well as the National Council for Women. The Ministry of International Cooperation supervises the implementation of the UN’s Partnership Development Framework (UNPDF), and chairs the Steering Committee for the framework with the UN Resident Coordinator in Egypt. This focuses on four outcomes: inclusive Economic Development; social justice; environmental sustainability and natural resource management; and women’s empowerment, with an estimated budget since its signing in 2018 of around $ 1.2 billion. VALUE OF COOPERATION WITH UNITED NATIONS At a time of increasing uncertainties, Al Mashat noted that Egypt’s partnership with the United Nations remains indispensable, underscoring the value of cooperation with the United Nations in overcoming COVID-19 challenges, particularly in addressing health, women’s empowerment, and environmental sustainability. The minister noted that the partnership development framework with the United Nations was designed according to national development priorities, and was a successful outcome of coordination between the relevant ministries and government agencies, civil society organizations and the private sector. Earlier in October, Minister of International Cooperation, Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, held a high-level meeting with all UN agencies in Egypt, in the presence of Mr. Richard Dictus, Resident Coordinator of the United Nations Office in Egypt, as well as directors of 15 UN agencies in Egypt to open a new chapter for cooperation amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Al-Mashat added that the four outcomes of the partnership development framework of the the United Nations achieve sustainable development through the first pillar in regards to achieving comprehensive economic development by providing job opportunities, building capabilities, increasing access to technology in local areas as well as supporting small and medium enterprises. The social justice pillar aims to support access to public services, expand social protection in health, nutrition and education, and enhance efforts to control population growth. The pillar of empowering women also aims to build their capacities and participation in leadership positions and the labor market, as well as empower them socially and economically. She added that while the pillar for environmental sustainability aims to mitigate environmental risks, in addition to the risks of climate change, it also achieves this by upgrading slums and promoting sustainable housing and management of water and energy resources. For his part, Mr. Richard Dictus, the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Egypt, praised the role of the Ministry of International Cooperation to strengthen the frameworks for joint cooperation and permanent coordination with government agencies, stressing the commitment of the United Nations to support Egypt in building on the successes of the economic reform program. BUDGET ALLOCATION FOR 2020/2021 During the meeting, the heads of the four working groups presented reports on the efforts made during the year 2019/2020 and what had been achieved during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the objectives of the partnership development framework during the year 2020/2021, and announced that an estimated budget of around 80 million dollars will be provided for economic development, about 346 million dollars for social justice, 58 million dollars for the environmental sustainability and 48 million dollars for the women empowerment. Ministry of International Cooperation seeks to apply the principles of economic diplomacy to strengthen the ‘Global Partnerships for Effective Development’. These principles include regularly organizing multi-stakeholder platforms to ensure that all projects between development partners are streamlined and effectively coordinated to accelerate the pace of development for the achievement of UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); adopting a consistent Global Partnerships Narrative People&Projects&Purpose (P&P&P); and mapping ODA financing to SDGs for all projects with multilateral and bilateral development partners.