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December 29, 2018

Pakistan, EU sign financial agreements worth €100 million


December 29, 2018

ISLAMABAD: The European Union on Friday signed two financing agreements with Pakistan for providing assistance of €100 million for enhanced education and growth for rural development programmes.

Economic Affairs Division Secretary Noor Ahmed and the EU Ambassador to Pakistan Jean Francois Cautain signed the financing agreements worth €100 million.

The agreements - Development through Enhanced Education Programme (DEEP), and Growth for Rural Advancement and Sustainable Progress (GRASP) – are equivalent to Rs15,942 million collectively.

Pakistan and European Union share a long history of development cooperation, and the financing agreements were part of the Multiannual Indicative Programme (2014-2020) signed between European Union and Pakistan.

These projects have been designed in collaboration with the government of Pakistan stakeholders. GRASP is a six year programme that contributes to the reduction of poverty through development of rural SMEs. It would create gender inclusive employment and income opportunities in the rural areas of Sindh and Balochistan through targeted support to both the public and private sectors. It is a grant amounting to €50 million.

DEEP aims to contribute towards universal access to quality education in Sindh, enabling young people to progress and engage in productive employment or higher/vocational education.

It aims to support the implementation of the educational policy of the government of Sindh, and is also a grant amounting to €50 million.

Welcoming the signing of the agreements, Economic Affairs Division secretary said the government of Pakistan deeply appreciated the development assistance provided by the European Union. Both sides agreed to deepen their engagement in multiple areas of development cooperation.

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