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December 5, 2019

DFID, Sindh govt agree to work on social sector projects jointly


December 5, 2019

The Sindh government and Department for International Development (DFID), United Kingdom, have agreed to develop partnerships in education, mother and child health (MCH), water and sanitation, and renewable energy sectors.

The decision was taken at a meeting between Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and DFID Head of Department Annabele Gerry, who was accompanied by British Deputy High Commissioner Mike Nithavriankis. The chief minister was assisted by Principal Secretary to CM Sajid Jamal Abro, Secretary Education Ahsan Mangi and Secretary Investment Najam Shah.

The chief minister said that the government had allocated 25 per cent funds of the total budget for education. “We are working hard to bring out-of-school children to schools.” He said that there were 2.2 million out-of-school children in the province.

Shah said that the DFID’s help in bringing the children to school was much needed. “You have to help us in developing a strategy to bring out-of-school children to schools,” he said and added he had evolved a plan to involve community for enrolling the children.

The chief minister and the DFID chief also discussed repair of old school buildings and improvement of one-room schools by giving them additional class rooms and washroom facilities.

The DFID and the provincial government agreed to formalise the proposal for improvement of education sector. The secretary education would prepare working papers and the requirements for further approval in this regard. The meeting also discussed investment in the MCH by launching a nutrition programme aimed at fortification of food and supplements. The chief minister said that the provincial government had lunched MCH programmes in different districts but food supplement and food fortification plan was needed for the rural areas in the province, particularly for Thar, Kohistan, Kachho.

The British deputy high commissioner told the chief minister that they were interested in investing in water and sanitation projects in the city. The chief minister directed the Secretary Investment to invite the UK’s company in this regard and facilitate them to identify the scope of the work, particularly in water treatment, sanitation and desalination projects. The renewable energy, and wind and solar projects were also discussed. The British envoy said that their firms were interested in installing wind energy projects. if they were given support. Shah directed the Secretary Investment Department to coordinate with the prospective British companies and work out a plan for investment in the energy sector.

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