The 39th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Islamic Development Bank Group (IDB) kick-started Tuesday evening under auspices of Saudi Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz while the Bank celebrates its 40 anniversary.
Addressing the meeting on behalf of King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, Prince Salman, also Deputy Premier and Minister of Defense, said the Islamic countries face mounting economic challenges which require concerted and relentless response.
The Islamic countries strive to achieve human development and sustainable economic growth, and promote stability through joint action, he said.
"These challenges require ambitious economic reform programs that could address the economic imbalances and keep abreast with the changing global economic atmospheres. We appreciate the IDB efforts in helping its member states in this regard," the Crown Prince affirmed.
He noted that the vision of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is based on collective responsibility of all Islamic countries and communities to achieve solidarity, noting that such responsibility should not be left to governments alone.
"Organizations, like the IDB group, play pivotal roles since the matter requires coordinated efforts since the objective of Islamic solidarity is to collect the capabilities of the nation for its best benefit," he added.
On his part, Saudi Minister of Finance and Chairman of the IDB Board of Governor Dr. Ibrahim Al-Assaf said the operations of the Bank grew remarkably in the recent years since the Bank transformed into a group of specialized institutions that support the member economies.
The IDB funding operations are in consistency with the relevant provisions of Sharia (the Islamic law), he said, noting that the Bank managed in the last four decades to "introduce positive changes to the lives of millions of people within its member states and beyond.
"This big achievement deepens the sense of responsibility for pressing ahead with the IDB modernization in the framework of the 10-year strategy," Dr. Al-Assaf pointed out.
In a similar speech, the IDB Group President Dr. Ahmad Mohammad Ali said the Bank has made numerous successes since its inception.
"The IDB capital grew from USD three billion upon its inception to USD 150 billion at present," he said, noting that Bank's rating was promoted by several world credit rating agencies.
Meanwhile, UAE Minister of Finance and Deputy Governor of Dubai Emirate Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashed Al Maktoum reaffirmed trust in the IDB ability to back up the plans of its member states for economic development.
"The UAE is confident that the bank and its affiliates would shoulder the responsibility for enhancing the economic advancement and development in the member states," he said.
Al Maktoum, who represents his country in the IDB's Board of Governors, highlighted the need of the Bank strategy to focus on providing finance to vital development projects the could create more jobs for the youths in its member states.
The State of Kuwait is represented at the meeting by Finance Minister Anas Al-Saleh