The UAE’s Humanitarian Message

  • 9 April 2015

The UAE was ranked as the world’s largest donor of official development aid relative to its national income during 2014 for the second year running.

According to figures from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) Development Assistance Committee (DAC), official development aid provided by the country hit Dh18 billion ($4.89 billion), representing 1.17 per cent of gross national income.

Being confirmed as the world’s largest donor of official development aid is clearly in keeping with the regional and international humanitarian approach of the UAE, which is based on a legacy of charity established by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan (may God grant his soul peace). This legacy has been complemented by the President, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan (may God protect him), who is keen to emphasize this aspect of UAE foreign policy by assisting efforts to confront the humanitarian and development challenges facing many countries around the world, thereby affirming the UAE as a global symbol of charity and humanitarian solidarity.

This ranking is the result of a combination of factors and considerations, the first of which is the firm belief among the UAE leadership of the importance of global human solidarity and rapid response in facing humanitarian crises and development problems. This strategy also aims to safeguard international peace and security, since the biggest threats to global stability are development problems, especially in areas afflicted by disputes, conflicts and natural disasters. Hence, the UAE gives high priority to providing assistance to those in need in poor areas, as well as those experiencing armed conflict or natural disasters, helping to develop these areas and overcoming humanitarian and development barriers.

Second, it is also a result of the overall scope of the UAE’s humanitarian work, which is not limited to charitable and relief efforts but also encompasses long-term social development targets in an effort to contribute effectively to furthering comprehensive and sustainable development in poor areas and communities.

Third, the UAE provides humanitarian and development assistance in keeping with its complete faith in the unity of human destiny and sound awareness of its ethical responsibilities towards people who require support and assistance, irrespective of political, racial, religious or geographical their circumstances. The country is completely impartial in its provision of humanitarian support for those in need, which confirms the credibility of its approach and further solidifies its global reputation as a force for good and the first state called upon for assistance in times of crisis or disaster.

Fourth, UAE humanitarian and development work is based on a highly effective network of institutions with extensive experience in all regions of the world. This adds an element of dynamism to its work that allows the UAE to deal with all manner of circumstances, variables and challenges related to humanitarian and development assistance.

The UAE has become a cornerstone for global humanitarian and development progress, based on its appreciation for the moral nature of such efforts, its faith in the unity of human destiny, and the need to work to establish charitable values in order to serve the interests of global peace, stability and development, while promoting a culture of solidarity and coexistence among peoples around the world.