This came in the statement of Qatar, delivered by HE Permanent Representative of Qatar to the United Nations ambassador Sheikha Alya Ahmed bin Saif al-Thani, before the Economic and Financial Committee (Second Committee) of the General Assembly of the 76th session of the United Nations on 'Crisis, Resilience and Recovery -- Accelerating Progress towards the 2030 Agenda'.
The statement pointed out that Qatar has taken many precautionary measures to confront the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic and ensure the health and safety of all citizens and residents. Qatar's investment in technology, science, and innovation has also constituted a decisive and enabling tool to mitigate the effects of the pandemic and moving to the distance learning process quickly without any interruption, taking into account the inclusiveness of education for all, it added.
The statement added that Qatar did not hesitate to continue its leading role in humanitarian work and was supportive of international efforts to combat the pandemic with contributions that exceeded $140mn. Qatar signed a $10mn basic contribution agreement with the World Health Organisation (WHO) to support the work program of the organisation and the initiative to accelerate the availability of tools to combat the Covid-19 in the countries most in need.
Also, the statement referred to the honourable role of Qatar Airways, which succeeded in transporting a large number of passengers and repatriating them at a time when the pandemic posed unprecedented challenges to the global aviation sector. Qatar Airways has also played an active role in transporting food aid and anti-epidemic requirements to dozens of countries around the world, it added. The statement indicated that Qatar was a pioneer in allocating a $20mn multi-year contribution to support the UNDP Accelerator Lab, as Qatar is a founding investor for these laboratories, whose work has shown a vital impact on the lives of many around the world.
Furthermore, the statement expressed Qatar's pride in hosting the Fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) in Doha from Jan 23 to 27, 2022, pointing out that the preparatory process for the conference is proceeding as intended despite the many obstacles imposed by the pandemic. The statement pointed out that Qatar aspires that the LDC5 will provide a unique opportunity to formulate an ambitious multi-level path to recovery from the pandemic, while the least developed countries chart the path towards sustainable development for the next decade. It stressed the confidence of Qatar that the Doha Work Program for the Least Developed Countries would be an important step in this direction.
Realising the challenges facing the whole world due to climate change, especially small island developing states and least developed countries, and the vulnerabilities in facing challenges related to climate change, His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani announced, at the UN Climate Action Summit in September 2019, Qatar's contribution of $100mn to support these countries and build their capacities, the statement explained.
The statement also expressed Qatar's aspiration for the COP 26 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow in November, as it will represent an important opportunity to strengthen international efforts to confront climate change. Moreover, the statement affirmed Qatar's keenness to continue its active and positive contributions and to provide development and relief assistance. In 2020, Qatar provided $533mn funding to many partners in development and humanitarian aid fields, including the UN agencies, the statement said.
In conclusion, the statement expressed Qatar's aspiration to open the UN House in Doha, which will house the offices of many UN bodies, including those working in the humanitarian and development fields, stressing that Qatar will remain a platform for co-operation between all countries and parties that believe in the importance of joint international action.