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Netherlands donates $8.4 million to UN agency for urban development

Netherlands donates $8.4 million to UN agency for urban development

Mrs. Anna Tibaijuka and Dutch Ambassador Van Gool
In a bid to support work in urban development, especially the provision of water and sanitation, the Government of the Netherlands has donated $8.4 million to a two-year partnership with the United Nations Human Settlement Programme (UN-HABITAT).

"Since its revitalization, one of the major constraints confronting UN-HABITAT has been the lack of predictable and stable financing," said the agency's Executive Director, Anna Tibaijuka. "This renewed vote of confidence will be a major boost to our work programme and the implementation of our new strategic vision."

UN-HABITAT said this increase in funding explicitly recognises the success of its work. In 2002, the Dutch Government carried out an in-depth assessment of the agency and concluded that the process of institutional revitalization, started in 1998, had been a success. Netherlands has also more than doubled its annual contribution to the agency to $1.4 million.

Mrs. Tibaijuka said the partnership would boost UN-HABITAT's capacity to meet the challenges set by the Millennium Development Goals, especially those targets concerned with improving the living conditions of over 100 million slum dwellers by 2020 and providing the poor with sustainable access to safe drinking water.

The new partnership funding will go primarily towards urban poverty reduction, urban youth development policies and slum upgrading.