Speech at the Official Inauguration of UNDP’s Regional Hub for Arab States Amman, Jordan

Nov 8, 2015

Speech of
Helen Clark UNDP Administrator
Official Inauguration of UNDP’s Regional Hub for Arab States
Amman, Jordan - Sunday, 8 November 2015

I am delighted to join Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and Expatriate Affairs of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, HE Mr. Nasser Judeh this morning to inaugurate UNDP’s Regional Hub for Arab States in Amman. I thank Jordan for agreeing to host this new Hub, and for its partnership and leadership on issues of regional and global importance.

Two years ago, UNDP adopted a new Strategic Plan 2014-2017, ‘Changing with the World’, which focuses our organization on making the next big breakthrough in development: to help countries achieve the simultaneous eradication of poverty, significant reduction of inequalities and exclusion, and environmental sustainability.

Achieving the bold vision set out in UNDP’s Strategic Plan meant that we needed to work better and smarter. That meant moving more of our policy expertise to regional hubs, closer to where the action is at country, sub-regional, and regional levels.

In the Arab States region, UNDP must respond to a very wide range of development contexts, challenges, and opportunities. The region includes some of the poorest and some of the richest countries in the world. Some countries are experiencing a challenging mix of major political transitions, entrenched poverty, and ongoing conflicts and crises – all of which have significant impacts on development. UNDP’s work at the crossroads of poverty reduction, support for effective governance, and building resilience to crises has never been more critical in this region.

We also must be well positioned to support all countries of the region as they move to incorporate the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which world leaders adopted at the United Nations two months ago, and which will guide global development approaches for the next fifteen years.

The purpose of the Regional Hub in Amman is to enable UNDP to deliver on its mandate and to support countries in the region to advance human and sustainable development:

* It aims to provide our Country Offices with the policy advice, technical support, and other services they need to help their country partners meet the key development challenges in their diverse national contexts.

* It helps UNDP stay in tune with regional challenges as they emerge.

* It is a platform for contributing to regional co-operation and to sharing solutions within and beyond the region.

* It helps us be more effective and efficient with the resources we have at a time when partners are eager to see clear value for every investment.

Amman is an ideal location for the Hub. Its central location in the region, along with its wealth of local talent, are of enormous benefit to UNDP’s work across the Arab States.

I commend all who have worked hard to make UNDP’s Regional Hub for Arab States Regional a reality, led by our Regional Director Sima Bahous. I thank once again the Government of Jordan for hosting us, and I look forward to the Hub being recognized as an indispensable asset for development through the Arab States region.

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