Press release: UNOPS Executive Director reaffirms key partnerships in Afghanistan

KABUL – UNOPS Executive Director, Grete Faremo, held several high-level meetings during her visit to Afghanistan, which included two important meetings with their Excellences, President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Officer, Abdullah Abdullah.

In the meeting held at the Presidential Palace, President Ghani stressed that reforms in state institutions are imperative. The President also added that he will be chairing the National Procurement Commission, where he will be closely monitoring the activities of the commission to prevent corruption and ensure transparency in government contracts.

In a separate meeting with Abdullah Abdullah, Ms. Faremo welcomed the National Unity Government and assured the Chief Executive Officer that UNOPS will continue to cooperate with the government and the people of Afghanistan.

The Chief Executive Officer expressed his appreciation to UNOPS for support and cooperation, particularly in infrastructure. He added that UNOPS activities in the areas of security, education, trade, health, and infrastructure are among the most valuable works for the people of Afghanistan.


UNOPS Executive Director met with their Excellences the President of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani, and Chief Executive Officer, Abdullah Abdullah. Also present were UNOPS Regional Director Bruce McCarron, Director of UNOPS in Afghanistan, Mikko Lainejoki, Senior Advisor, Dr. Mohammad Haider Reza and Programme Manager, Abdul Sattar Raufi. Credit: Office of the President of Afghanistan (left) and National Radio Television of Afghanistan (right). Photo: Office of the President of Afghanistan (left); National Radio Television of Afghanistan (right)

To welcome the newly appointed Ministers, Ms. Faremo met separately with their Excellences, Eklil Ahmad Hakimi, Minister of Finance, Mahmood Baligh, Minister of Public Works and Dr. Assadullah Hanif Balkhi, Minister of Education.

In their meeting, Minister Baligh thanked Ms. Faremo for UNOPS long-standing support to the Ministry of Public Works. He expressed satisfaction with the assistance the organization has provided over the years and appreciates UNOPS commitment to the strengthening of the local capacity in his Ministry.

Ms. Faremo confirmed that UNOPS will continue to partner with the Ministry of Public Works and support the strategy of the newly appointed Minister. She further expressed UNOPS commitment to a transition process, and will work closely with Ministry teams and its partners to move towards an increasing consultancy model, in line with UNOPS strategic plan, 2014-2017. 

Ms. Faremo held other key meetings throughout her three-day visit, which included meetings with their Excellences, Hiroshi Takahashi, Ambassador of Japan, Erling Skjønsberg, Ambassador of Norway, Ari Mäki, Ambassador of Finland, Dr. Julie Pruzan-Jørgensen, Deputy Head of Mission for the Danish Embassy, Ulrika Josefsson, Head of Development Cooperation for the Swedish Embassy, Nicholas Haysom, Special Representative of the Secretary General  to Afghanistan and William Hammink, USAID Mission Director.