In 2012, the State of Kuwait signed a Memorandum of Agreement with UNDP to participate in the Junior Professional Officers (JPO) programme, to send young Kuwaiti professionals to serve in various entities of the United Nations for a period of two years, enabling them to gain experience in international development strategic policy and implementation. Kuwait is the only Arab State currently supporting the UNDP JPO programme and is the largest donor to the JPO programme from the region to date. The Kuwait JPO Programme is managed by the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development (GSSCPD) and supported by UNDP Kuwait and the JPO Service Centre in Copenhagen.
Kuwait has now sent two batches of 10 JPOs each, totalling 20 young Kuwaiti professionals.
The JPO Programme represents a new dimension to Kuwait’s South-South Cooperation activities and one which is also expected to help build national development capacity following the repatriation of the JPOs upon completion of their assignment. The posts selected for funding were chosen by the GSSCPD on the basis of their particular utility to supporting implementation of the national development plan. Thus the areas of specialization of the 20 JPOs include environment and energy, strategic partnerships, communications, audit, human resources, private sector in development, sustainable development policy, volunteerism and governance policy. Following the success of the Kuwait JPO Programme to date, other countries in the region are now aiming to emulate Kuwait’s example.
The JPO programme has also provided an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of UNDP and its mandate to support the empowerment of youth. It is also a valued tool to raise awareness among the youth themselves of UNDP and its role as well as the benefits to Kuwait of engaging in South-South cooperation.
Following completion of the first JPO assignment, three former Kuwaiti JPOs were selected for employment by UNDP in New York and Amman. A fourth former JPO has been recruited by the OPEC Fund for International Development.
Batch 1, deployed 2013:
|UNDP Eastern Caribbean Regional Office||Bridgetown|
|Staff Administrative Services||Copenhagen|
|Istanbul International Centre for Private Sector in Development||Istanbul|
|Tokyo International Conference for African Development, Regional Bureau for Africa||New York|
|Bureau of External Relations and Advocacy, Communications Unit||New York|
|Bureau for Policy and Programme Support||New York|
|Bureau for Development Policy||New York|
|Energy and Environment Group||New York|
|Office of Audit and Investigations||New York|
|Private Sector Development and Youth Employment UN Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO)||Vienna|
Batch 2, deployed 2015:
|UNDP Global Centre for Public Service||Singapore|
|Regional Bureau of Arab States||New York|
|UN Volunteers Office||Bonn|
|Articulation of Territorial Networks for Human Development (ART) Programme||Brussels|
|JPO Service Centre||Copenhagen|
|Business and Administration Management||New York|
|UNDP Country Office, Environment and Energy||Bangkok|
|UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) Regional Office||Bangkok|
|UNCDF, Policy Sector||New York|
|Strategic Donor Partnerships and Resource Mobilisation, UNIDO||Vienna|
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