In the “Sudan Partnership Conference”, which was held in virtual mode on 25 June 2020, the Islamic Development Bank has confirmed providing Sudan with US$35.5 million as part of a total amount of US$2.3 billion to help member countries respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The IsDB Group has emphasised its willingness to cooperate with the international community, other development partners and the private sector to enhance partnership and cooperation in support of the Sudanese government’s efforts to achieve socio-economic development.
On this occasion, His Excellency Dr Bandar Hajjar, the Chairman of the IsDB Group, stated that IsDB support for socio-economic development in Sudan stemmed from the Bank’s mission aimed at achieving socio-economic progress for people in member countries and Muslim communities in non-member countries. Concerning the Bank’s partnership with Sudan, Dr Hajjar pointed out that Sudan was a founding member of the Bank and a member of all IsDB Group institutions, including the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Investment and Export Credit (ICIEC), the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) and the Islamic Research and Training Institute (IRTI).
The IsDB President lauded Member States for their support of the Bank, especially the strong support that the Bank is receiving from the headquarters country, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He stated that Saudi Arabia owned approximately 25% of the Bank’s capital, and continued to provide the Bank with generous support, thus contributing to its excellent credit ratings and enabling it to intensify its efforts to combat poverty and unemployment and support development in the least developed countries in particular, which embodies the spirit of cooperation and solidarity on which the Bank was founded.
Dr Hajjar said that the Republic of Sudan was one of the countries that received special attention from the Bank, and the partnership between the two sides has continued even in the most difficult conditions that the country has gone through. He noted that the IsDB Group’s total interventions to date amounted to US$1.7 billion, including US$1.1 billion for IsDB-funded projects, US$70.8 million for private sector financing operations by the ICD, and trade financing totaling US$126.1 million through the ITFC. In addition, the other IsDB Group funds and programmes have helped finance approximately US$ 388.6 million, and the ICIEC has provided US$249.3 million in trade insurance and US$358.2 million in new insurance liabilities.
Answering a question on the sectors funded by the Bank in Sudan, His Excellency the President stated that the largest amount of financing was in agriculture, with 44.6% or approximately US$754.9 million, followed by energy with 16%, or US$271.8 million, industry and mining, with 10.2% or approximately US$172.6 million, and, in the fourth position, water, sanitation and urban services, with 8.3%, or US$141.2 million.
With regard to the current IsDB Group portfolio in Sudan, he said that the Group’s active portfolio consisted of 38 operations, with a value of US$625.9 million, or 37% of the total portfolio, while 151 operations, amounting to US$1,067.5 million, or 63% of the total portfolio, have been completed.
Concerning Assistance to Sudan to achieve the SDGs, H.E. the President stressed that the Bank helped support Sudan in achieving 8 SDGs, namely SDG 1 ‘no poverty”, SDG 2 “zero hunger”, SDG 3 “good health and well-being’, SDG 4 “quality education”, SDG 6 “clean water and sanitation”, SDG 7 “affordable and clean energy”, SDG 8 “decent work and economic growth”, and SDG 9 “industry, innovation and infrastructure”.
The Chairman of the IsDB Group concluded his statement by saying that the Group would work alongside the Sudanese government led by Prime Minister Dr. Abdalla Hamdok, to overcome the obstacles and challenges facing the country in this important phase of its development.