Minister Kaag allocates more money for Nuffic sholarships programmes

The Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, Sigrid Kaag, is investing through Nuffic an extra €10.1 million in scholarships for 9 countries in Africa and the Middle East.
Orange Knowledge Programme

Through Dutch educational institutions, professionals – often young professionals – from the Sahel, the Horn of Africa and the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA) can follow a course of study in water management, food security, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and developing the rule of law.

This pertains to some 850 extra scholarships within the compass of the Orange Knowledge Programme (2017-2022) and the MENA Scholarship Programme (2017-2019). A similar target number of men and women from Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Iraq, Palestinian areas, Ethiopia, Mali, Burkina Faso, Nigeria and Niger can apply for a scholarship through Dutch educational institutions for a short-term course or a master’s degree in the Netherlands.

The decision stems from the new policy memorandum ‘Investing in Global Prospects’ for the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation. Education and international knowledge cooperation are given a greater role in this, with special attention being devoted to education (academic and vocational) and job opportunities for women and young people.

Addressing problems by sharing knowledge

‘An exceedingly fine expansion of our programmes’, says Nuffic Director Freddy Weima. ‘This will enable us to offer even more people the opportunity of expanding their knowledge and putting it to good use in their countries.’ Unsurprisingly, Weima believes that education plays a crucial role in a country’s sustainable development. ‘Over the 66 years that we’ve been managing education and development programmes, not only have we been able to offer tens of thousands of men and women the opportunity to study here but the manifold partnerships between education in the Netherlands and education in the various countries have also fostered structural improvement in the worldwide level of education.

Only by sharing knowledge will we be able to address the global problems we’re faced with in terms of such things as food security and climate change.’

Orange Knowledge Programme

In conjunction with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Nuffic is programme manager for two knowledge development programmes being financed by the Ministry.

The Orange Knowledge Programme – the integrated successor to the NFP scholarship programme and the NICHE capacity development programme – focuses on knowledge development and cooperation between Dutch educational institutions and partners in 52 participating countries. The programme is being financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the extra funding to the tune of € 9.28 million takes its budget up to €194.2 million. A sizeable proportion of this is earmarked for long-term institutional collaboration. Furthermore, the programme comprises an individual scholarship programme for professionals through courses and master’s degrees, bespoke group training and alumni activities. The programme will run until mid 2022.

Key to the programme are cooperation on an equal footing, ownership, inclusion and dovetailing with demand and the job market in the partner countries. The extra funding will benefit Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Iraq, Palestinian areas, Ethiopia, Mali, Burkina Faso and Nigeria. Niger is being added to the list of countries for the first time. The additional funding will create around 770 extra scholarships for short-term courses (up to a maximum of 9 months in duration) and 120 for master’s degrees. The programme now encompasses a total of 7,770 scholarships for short-term courses and some 1,500 for master’s degrees.

MENA Scholarship Programme

The MENA Scholarship programme focuses on courses and bespoke training geared towards buttressing democratic transition in Algeria, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Syria and Tunisia. The additional funding of €916,000 will enable 75 extra scholarships to be offered for short-term courses (spanning a minimum of two months and a maximum of 12 weeks) for mid-career professionals from Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon. The MSP will run until mid 2019. In excess of 300 scholarships are available for short-term courses through the MSP.

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