Kingdom funds $114.8 million in Yemeni development projects

March 1, 2010

The 19th session of the Saudi-Yemeni Coordination Council concluded yesterday in Riyadh with the signing of a number of agreements and the issuance of a final communiqué.

Minister of Finance and Chairman of the Saudi Development Fund Ibrahim Al-Assaf and Yemeni Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Abdul Kareem bin Ismail Al-Arhabi signed four agreements providing financial aid for Yemen. The grants included SR 150 million [$40 million] for water and drainage projects for urban areas; SR 187.5 million [$50 million] for financing the 5th Energy Project; SR 75 million [$20 million] for the Hudeidah Central Hospital; and SR 18 million [$4.8 million] for equipping workshops and laboratories for the faculties of engineering and education at Taiz University.

Memoranda of cooperation in the fields of tourism, health, social insurance, culture, science and academics were also signed by the two sides.

In the meeting’s final communiqué, the delegates touched on a number of bilateral and regional issues. They reiterated the importance of respecting Iraq’s unity, sovereignty and independence and urged the Iraqi government to exert additional efforts towards national reconciliation. On the Iranian nuclear issue, they called on Iran to continue dialogue with the international community and confirmed the importance of cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Regarding Somalia, the two sides encouraged the conflicting parties to work for reconciliation and the preservation of the unity of the Somali territories. They also expressed concern about piracy in the area.

Finally, the communiqué called for continued cooperation between Saudi Arabia and Yemen in the fields of border security, counterterrorism, anti-human-trafficking and anti-drug smuggling efforts, customs enforcement, trade, education and technology, health, energy, agriculture, media, water, de-mining, tourism and antiquities and social security.