By John Lee.
The Government of Norway and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) signed a partnership agreement today for USD 9 million (NOK 75 million) to support stabilization and recovery efforts for Iraq post-ISIL.
Norway’s contribution will be channelled through UNDP’s Funding Facility for Stabilization (FFS) which finances fast-track initiatives in areas liberated from ISIL.
This is Norway’s 10th contribution to FFS since 2015, bringing its total contributions to USD 45,000,000 (NOK 376,200,000). Norway is the 7th largest contributor of the 27 donors that fund the FFS.
Based on priorities identified by the Government of Iraq and local authorities, FFS helps quickly repair essential public infrastructure, boosts the capacity of local government, and provides short-term employment opportunities.
“Our biggest priority at the moment is to focus on areas that were the longest-held territories by ISIL and the last to be liberated,” says Resident Representative of UNDP, Zena Ali-Ahmad.
“These areas have experienced lower returns, and through UNDP and partners’ stabilization efforts we’re working hard to bring people back home. This generous contribution from Norway is critical in helping us achieve this important objective.”
“Our gratitude goes to the Government of Norway for all the support, and for reaffirming its commitment to not only stabilizing Iraq but securing long-term prosperity for its people,” adds Ms Ali-Ahmad.
At the request of the Government of Iraq, UNDP established the Funding Facility for Stabilization (FFS) in June 2015 to facilitate the return of displaced Iraqis, lay the groundwork for reconstruction and recovery, and safeguard against the resurgence of violence.
This is done through rehabilitating essential infrastructure and restoring basic services. To date, UNDP’s Funding Facility has implemented more than 2,500 projects in key critical areas of Anbar, Salah al-Din, Diyala, Kirkuk and Ninewa, with another 600 in the pipeline, pending additional funds.