- Dubai-based DP World, a global trade enabler, will provide a $2 million donation to help increase water availability and improve healthcare in Berbera following an agreement with the Government of Somaliland. The move is in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations to build a better world over the next 15 years.
The funding builds on DP World’s ongoing work in Somaliland where it has a 30-year concession to develop a multi-purpose project at the Port of Berbera. The initiative aligns with the UN’s 17 goals for sustainable development that address major issues such as access to clean water and sanitation, ending poverty and hunger, improving health and education, combating climate change, and protecting our oceans and forests. It also forms part of DP World’s “Our World, Our Future” global sustainability programme.
As part of the project, DP World will drill four water wells in Berbera and three outside the Sahil region to address recent water shortages and meet the increasing demand for water following the growth of Berbera’s infrastructure and the development of the port.
The Sahil region has been affected by a devastating drought for two years and only one in three people in Somaliland currently have access to safe drinking water, according to the United Nations. Part of the donation will also help finance improvements to the Berbera General Hospital and the Berbera Mental Hospital, to ensure access to better medical facilities and reduce the need for local residents to travel outside of the town when they require assistance.
DP World Group chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, said: “The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals fit with our intention to work in a sustainable and responsible way, especially our commitment to minimise impact on our environment and to build vibrant, secure and resilient societies. This support for Berbera is part of our commitment to help develop the areas in which we operate and we are confident that our donation will have important benefits for many people across the region. We look forward to continuing to work closely with the Somaliland authorities and local people to improve people’s quality of life through key infrastructure and sustainability projects.”
Since taking over the Port of Berbera, DP World has backed a range of initiatives on water scarcity, education and healthcare in the Sahil region. Ongoing efforts include donating 4.5 million litres of water to the drought committee in Berbera, sponsorship of 11 schools and a maritime education academy, as well as two hospitals and a clinic. To help tackle food insecurity and famine in the area the company has also supplied 3,000 families with food provisions.