VIENNA, 24th June, 2018 (WAM) — The UAE has participated in the 39th annual session of the OPEC Fund for International Development’s Ministerial Council, which took place in Vienna, Austria. Obaid bin Humaid Al Tayer, Minister of State for Financial Affairs, headed the delegation.
During the meeting, Al Tayer conveyed his appreciation to the Board of Governors, the Director-General and OFID’s employees on their efforts and achievements including completing OFID’s 2017 Annual Report. He also stressed the need to support OFID’s member countries to achieve the goals which the countries have set.
Al Tayer highlighted OFID’s pivotal role in strengthening cooperation between member countries and developing countries, and assisting low-income countries in their quest for economic growth. He added, ” The UAE attaches great importance to working with leading international institutions and organisations to provide financial resources to developing countries for their economic and social growth.”
The 39th session witnessed the presentation of the OFID Annual Award for Development which was awarded to BRAC for their efforts in supporting Rohingya refugees, providing water and sanitation services, healthcare services and educational support for children. Contributions from the Award will be directed towards BRAC’s humanitarian response in Cox’s Bazar.
The session covered matters including consideration and approval of OFID’s Annual Report 2017, financial statements, reports on the lending programmes and grant operations, as well as electing an external auditor for 2018. Participants also set the date for the next session which will be held on 13th June 2019 in Vienna, Austria, and appointed Dr. Abdulhamid Al- Khalifa as Director General of the OPEC Fund for International Development for the next five years.
OFID has achieved several successes such as increased financing for development in 2017, its investment portfolio has exceeded expectations for the second year in a row as a result of strength in equity markets. At the end of 2017, total revenue amounted to US$231 million, while total expenditure amounted to $62 million.
Revenue from financing activities for development amounted to $175 million, and increase by $17 million compared to the previous year. The investment portfolio resulted in increased revenue by $156 million. The Fund’s total assets by the end of 2017 amounted to $7,318 million. In addition, OFID’s equity at the end of 2017 was $7,129 million. The Fund’s reserve by the end of 2017 amounted to $2,867.2 million compared to $2,740.3 million in 2016.
In terms of grant operations, 885 applications for grants and assistance were received in 2017, including 122 requests for projects to support Palestine. 65 projects worth $22,239,173 were approved. These grants were channeled through 55 supporting partners to cover projects in 56 countries.