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Planning, Int’l Cooperation Ministry, Qatar fund sign $4.2m grant agreement


The Jordan Times


AMMAN — The Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation signed an agreement on Thursday with the Qatar Development Fund (QFD) by which the fund will grant $4.2 million towards the financing of the Jordan Health Fund for Refugees, managed by the Ministry of Health, to mitigate financial pressures on the ministry's budget.
The agreement was signed on behalf of the Jordanian government by Planning Minister Wissam Rabadi and Director General of QFD Khalifa Bin Jassim Al Kuwari. The signing ceremony was attended by Minister of Health Saad Jaber, Qatari Ambassador to Jordan Sheikh Saud Bin Nasser Al Thani and a delegation from the QFD, according to a Planning Ministry statement.
Under the agreement, the QFD can join the Multi Donor Account (MDA), which includes the US Agency for International Development, the Government of Denmark and the Government of Canada, as well as the Global Concessional Financing Facility.
The creation of the MDA is a “qualitative leap”, with three programmes funded and prioritised in the Ministry of Health budget: Primary healthcare, secondary healthcare and medicine and medical consumables, according to the statement.
Rabadi praised the QFD's contribution to the Jordan Health Fund for Refugees, and stressed that hosting more than 1.3 million Syrian refugees in the Kingdom has a "great impact on all sectors and services" provided by the government. 
He also highlighted Jordan's role as a "model" in terms of receiving refugees and sharing resources with them, adding that Jordan has shifted to the development dimension in dealing with Syrian asylum after focusing on the humanitarian aspect at the beginning of the crisis, and stressing the need to coordinate international efforts to provide appropriate support to Jordan, especially in the education and health sectors, the statement said. 
The agreement is the first agreement to establish development cooperation between the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation and the Qatar Development Fund, according to the statement. 
Rabadi stressed the Kingdom's aspiration to develop cooperation and bilateral action to achieve economic and social development, praising the bilateral relations between the two "brotherly" countries. 
The government of Jordan has also thanked the QFD for this support.
For his part, the director general of the QFD expressed his appreciation for the Kingdom's role in "carrying the burden of Syrian asylum", and his awareness of the great challenges posed by the situation and its direct and indirect negative effects on the macroeconomic and public finances, according to the statement. 
Kawari also expressed the fund's aspiration to work with the Jordanian government to meet the developmental challenges it faces.

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