UAE’s $110mn aid improving lives & development in Yemen’s Socotra

By Arya M Nair, Official Reporter
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Socotra Island
Representational image

The UAE’s development and relief aid to the Socotra Governorate since 2015, helped the Archipelago to overcome its many problems and grave humanitarian situations, as well as assisting local authorities in improving the lives and livelihoods of the Soqotri people of Yemen.

According to official reports, the Emirates Red Crescent (ERC), the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation, the Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan Humanitarian and Scientific Foundation, the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), and the Abu Dhabi Waste Management Centre provided $110 million in aid to the island between 2015 and 2021.

This aid has supported the areas of social and health services, basic supplies, transport and storage, education, fishing, construction, public education, energy, water and public health, government support and civil society.

The airport and the port which was restored by the UAE aid allowed it to serve the development process and facilitate transportation to and from the island. Improvements to the airport’s lighting, maintenance of the nine-kilometer barrier, and the construction of two VIP halls and separate luggage check halls were also part of this aid.

Moreover, the UAE contributed to the rehabilitation of a 90-kilometer-long pier, which was extended to a depth of four and a half meters in order to accommodate huge ships. Many solar power stations were also installed.

For the health sector, the UAE contributed to improving the performance of the island’s health sector, by supporting and operating hospitals and medical centers, providing medical equipment and ambulances, establishing a fully equipped emergency facility and two surgery rooms, and donating 13 beds and an ICU unit.

In addition, the UAE aided the island’s public transportation and maritime transport sectors by contributing four school buses and renting 15 buses to carry children across the desert.

The UAE has also supported projects for productive families and family and women’s associations, by providing sewing machines, holding workshops for girls and enabling them to participate in heritage festivals in the UAE, establishing a childhood and motherhood center, and training farmers, particularly palm tree farmers.

Related: UAE vows $100mn to support education initiatives for women & girls in developing countries