Yemen and donors held on Monday a meeting which was dedicated to launching and discussing the transitional program for stabilization and development 2012-2014, just as the country is preparing for a fund-rally donor meeting in Saudi Arabia on September 4.
The program included four themes focused on early economic and social needs and urgent priorities during the transition period ongoing under a power-transfer deal backed by the West. The deal was signed in November after the mass protests against the former regime.
The urgent priorities are: restoring political, security and economic stability, med-term economic recovery plans, developing the system of good governance and state building, human resources development and youth aspirations, improving the infrastructure and expanding social protection.
The planning ministry, which prepared the program with technical support from donors, estimated the financing gap to implement the program at about $5.85 billion.
The meeting titled: strategic partnership forum, also discussed the joint social and economic assessment report which was prepared by the EU, the UN, the WB and the Islamic development bank in close collaboration with the ministry.
The assessment report outlined the impacts of the 2011 mass protests on the social and economic situation and requirements, mainly emergency aid to implement the program within the efforts to help Yemen.
At launch, Planning and International Cooperation Minister, Mohammed Al-Sa'ady, said the program was an emergency medium-term plan aimed at restoring political, security and economic stability after the unrest.
The team, which conducted the joint social and economic assessment, reviewed their report which said the poverty rate increased to 54% by end 2011, from 42% in 2009.
"The Yemeni economy contracted by 11% last year and is unlikely to grow this year, and this requires immediate aid to start reform policies and other actions, just as outlined in the government's program," the report said.
Yemen plans to ask for $10 billion in emergency aid in the donor meeting delayed to September 4.