UNDP and Turkey signed $15 million agreement to support sustainable development in the region

Jul 1, 2014

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Government of Turkey sealed a five-year, $15 million agreement to support development in Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (ECIS).

New Horizons - This agreement signals Turkey’s enhanced focus on sustainable and inclusive growth in the region.

During the signing ceremony Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Ahmet Davutoğlu said the following: “Development cooperation has become an integral part of Turkish foreign policy. In this framework, our partnership with UNDP has also been strengthened with a view to enhance our contribution to sustainable development not only in our region but at the global level. Turkey has already increased its voluntary annual contributions to UNDP core budget to 3 million US Dollars. With the agreement we signed today Turkey will contribute 15 million US Dollars to UNDP Regional Program for Europe and CIS, which will be implemented by the UNDP Regional Service Center located in İstanbul. Taking this opportunity, I would like to express our pleasure to host UNDP and other UN bodies in İstanbul, which is fast becoming a regional hub for UN and other international organizations.”

During the signing ceremony, UNDP Administrator Helen Clark commended her counterpart, Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ahmet Davutoğlu, for his government’s commitment to the programme countries of the ECIS region. Turkey will contribute $3 million annually over the next five years to the regional UNDP programme.

“On behalf of UNDP, I would like to express my thanks for the significant financial contribution made by the Government of Turkey”, said Helen Clark. “We have enjoyed excellent cooperation with your Government, and we look forward to working together to achieve concrete, transformative change in the lives of the people of the region.”

The agreement comes as the UNDP Regional Center for Europe and the CIS, which is responsible for implementing the regional programme, is being established in Istanbul with the strong support of the Government of Turkey.

“The excellent geographic location of the UNDP Regional Centre will facilitate better connections with the programme countries of the ECIS region”, said Helen Clark. “A very important benefit will come from UNDP’s co-location in Istanbul with key UN partners – including UN Women and UNFPA – which will improve coordination and harmonization within the UN development system.”

The new regional programme will cover the following areas: inclusive and sustainable growth and development; improved democratic governance, including rule of law and accountability. In addition, the programme will support work to reduce the likelihood of conflict and lower the risk of natural disasters, including from climate change.

Helen Clark further noted during the signing ceremony that the Conference on International Cooperation in Istanbul which UNDP co-organized with the Turkish Cooperation and Development Agency, TIKA is a concrete example of the strong evolving partnership between UNDP and Turkey.