Support for Inclusive Development in Afghanistan Will Continue, Says UNDP Asia-Pacific Chief

10 Dec 2013

imageUNDP Afghanistan: Mr. Haoliang Xu, UN Assistant Secretary-General and Director of UNDP Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific, during a meeting with the Afghan Minister of Finance, Dr. Hazrat Omar Zakhilwal, in Kabul.

Kabul: The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) will continue to support inclusive and sustainable development for all Afghan men and women throughout the Transformation Decade, 2015-2024. This was stated by the UN Assistant Secretary-General and UNDP Assistant Administrator and Director of UNDP Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific, Mr Haoliang Xu, at the conclusion of his visit to Afghanistan, here today.

Mr Xu said his organization was committed to building the capacity of the Independent Election Commission (IEC) as the key electoral institution in the country, as well as for the process of presidential and provincial council elections to be held in 2014.

“UNDP will continue to provide support to the IEC of Afghanistan to conduct the 2014 elections which are critical for the political transition of the country”, Mr. Xu observed, during a meeting with the IEC chairman, Mr Ahmad Yousuf Nuristani.

Mr. Xu highlighted the importance of public outreach in encouraging women’s participation in the electoral process and welcomed the presence of national and international observers as it would be critical for credibility of the elections.

UNDP would work closely with the Government of Afghanistan to strengthen the Afghan National Police as it strives to implement the principles of civilian policing and promotion of rule of law in the country, Mr Xu, who is the senior-most representative of UNDP in the Asia-Pacific region, noted.

He said UNDP would intensify efforts to make its presence felt in the provinces of Afghanistan through interventions aimed at poverty alleviation, strong rural development and effective governance for delivery of basic services to the citizens.

UNDP works in Afghanistan to help reduce poverty and inequality, promote effective governance and build resilience. During his three-day visit to Afghanistan, Mr Xu held wide-ranging consultations with some of UNDP’s key partners including senior government officials, think-tanks and civil society representatives, and partners from the international community based in Afghanistan.