About UNDP in the Arab States

The Regional Bureau for Arab States (RBAS) based in New York serves as the headquarters for UNDP regional programmes and country offices in 17 Arab countries, with the 18th  located in the occupied Palestinian territory. The Bureau is headed by Ms. ٍSima Sami Bahous, United Nations Assistant Secretary General and UNDP Assistant Administrator and Regional Director.

UNDP is the UN's global development network, an organization advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life.

UNDP’s activities in the Arab States region build on UNDP’s five thematic priorities, with additional emphasis placed on addressing the main impediments to human development in the region as identified by the Arab Human Development Report series, namely freedom and good governance, knowledge, and women’s empowerment. Through its activities, the Bureau therefore seeks to promote and advance:

  • Sustainable development
  • Democratic governance and peacebuilding
  • Climate Change and disaster resilience
  • Women’s empowerment
  • Knowledge societies
  • HIV and development
  • Energy and environment
  • Youth

Organizational Structure


The Regional Bureau for Arab States (RBAS) based in New York serves as the headquarters for UNDP regional programmes and country offices in 17 Arab countries, with the 18th located in the occupied Palestinian territory.

The activities of the Regional Programme Division revolve around three main pillars: (1) SDG Achievement; (2) Democratic Governance; and (3) Building a knowledge society.

The Arab Human Development Reports remain the advocacy vanguard of the regional programme, while youth has been identified as a cross-cutting issue to ensure that this constituency is mainstreamed as a beneficiary of and catalyst for the socio-economic advances targeted. 

UNDP Country Offices receive daily policy and administrative support from the Country Operations Division. The Country Operations Division works closely with UNDP Country Offices to ensure quality programming, results-based management applications, and effective resource mobilization strategies.

In each country office, the UNDP Resident Representative normally also serves as the Resident Coordinator of development activities for the United Nations system as a whole.

The Regional Bureau for Arab States established the Regional Hub in Amman in 2015, to ensure effective, timely and responsive support tailored to the needs and priorities of its Country Offices.

The Hub is able to quickly mobilize support by connecting UNDP country offices and national partners to UNDP’s global network of development experts – both inside and outside the organization, and to United Nations specialized agencies.

Who are the decision makers?


The Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme is the highest United Nations official and the chief of UNDP in Country Offices across the Arab States. The Resident Representative delegates authority to the Country Director. Decisions in UNDP are made by the Management Group consisting of the Resident Representative, the Country Director, the Programme Manager and the Operations Manager.

How many are we?

Country

Contract Type

UNDP Staff       

Service Contract

UN
Volunteers    

Total    

Algeria

21

12

 

33    

Bahrain

12

2

 

14

Djibouti
21 17

1

39

Egypt

58

25

7

90

Iraq

72

60

13

145

Jordan

29

48

6

83

Kuwait

22

16  

38

Lebanon

52

301

 4

357

Libya

21

 11

1

33

Morocco 

31

11

16

58

Saudi Arabia

26

  2

28

Somalia

146

161

25

332

Sudan

186

150

20

356

Syria

21

63

 

84

Tunisia

40

47

17

104

United Arab Emirates

11

2

 

13

Yemen

56

73

 

129

Programe for  Palestinian People

75

179

41

295