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Sudan, IGAD sign MoU on development projects

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October 20, 2016 (KHARTOUM). Sudan and Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for implementing infrastructure and capacity building projects as part of the European Union funding for the regional integration projects in Africa

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Inter-Governmental Authority on Development

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Sudan’s Minister of International Cooperation, Kamal Hassan Ali, praised the vital role IGAD plays in supporting the ongoing development projects in Sudan.

“IGAD supported peace and security in Sudan and sponsored the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA),” said Ali.

He said that the projects were earlier agreed upon during the technical meetings between the IGAD and Sudanese government officials.

The minister pointed that the EU funded development projects include linking Sudan and Ethiopia electricity networks and the railways project which is part of the regional integration scheme.

“The EU funded projects include building the capacities of the Ministry of International Cooperation staff and other concerned ministers in the field of international and development cooperation,” he said.

The minister said that the EU funded development projects include peace and security programs to help integrating former combatants through the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) Commission.

The selected projects include desertification control in Kassala and White Nile States and other ecological projects, according to the minister.

EU development aid in East Africa is delivered at the national and regional, continental and thematic levels. However Sudan and South Sudan do not benefit from the national allocations since they have not ratified and acceded to the Cotonou Partnership Agreement.

The European aid to the IGAD countries is dedicated to four strategic areas of development: agriculture, natural resources and environment; economic cooperation, integration and social development; peace security and humanitarian affairs; and corporate development services.

The Minister of International Cooperation Kamal Hassan Ali signed for the Sudanese government and IGAD Executive Secretary Mahboub Maalim signed for the East African body.

Maalim on his part told the official Sudan News Agency (SUNA) that IGAD is keen to cooperate with Sudan in infrastructure, immigration and capacity building projects.

He pointed that the meeting with Sudanese government was fruitful and stressed continuing coordination to support development projects in the country.

Last August, the minister of international cooperation said that Sudan has a big share in the funds allocated by IGAD for regional integration projects.

He disclosed that the amount of EU fund for integration projects in the IGAD’s eight courtiers is 600 million Euros, in addition to 80 million Euros for DDR projects and 15 million Euros for vocational training programs.

(ST)

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