As the deadly Ebola virus outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo continues, with the first cases emerging in neighbouring Uganda this week, the EU has announced further emergency funding of €3.5 million, of which €2.5 million is for Uganda and €1 million for South Sudan. The aid package will strengthen rapid detection and reaction to Ebola cases. Today’s funding comes on top of the EU support for the Ebola response in the Democratic Republic of Congo and prevention and preparedness actions in Uganda, South Sudan, Rwanda and Burundi.
Christos Stylianides, Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis management and EU Ebola coordinator said: “We are doing all we can to save lives and stop further Ebola cases. Today, our main task is not only to help the Democratic Republic of Congo, but also assist neighbouring countries like Uganda. Here, our funding is helping with surveillance, work with local communities, and boosting local capacities for these countries to take timely and effective action. We are committed to continue our assistance to bring this outbreak to an end, for as long as it takes.”
In co-ordination with other international donors and in line with the World Health Organization’s Regional Strategic Ebola Response and Preparedness Plans, EU funding is contributing towards measures that include mainly:
- the strengthening of disease surveillance at community level, health facilities and points of entry (border crossing points);
- the training of rapid response teams;
- the training of healthcare and frontline workers on contact-tracing, infection prevention and control measures, psychosocial support, and safe and dignified burials;
- local capacity-building by equipping medical treatment facilities; and
- community awareness-raising.
EU humanitarian health experts in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and the region are coordinating the response and they are in daily contact with the health authorities in these countries, the World Health Organization and operational partners.
This year’s European Development Days (EDD), Europe’s premier forum for international cooperation and development, will take place on 18 & 19 June 2019 in Brussels. The title of this year’s event is “Addressing inequalities: building a world which leaves no one behind.”
“The European Development Days (EDD) highlight Europe’s commitment to building a sustainable and fairer world. The forum builds on the core belief that cooperation is key to achieving real change towards a poverty-free and sustainable world where everyone has the prospect of a decent life. An essential aim is thus to inspire the desire to work together in a spirit of true partnership through facilitating networking.
This year the EDD will focus on promoting inclusiveness and equality as a catalyst for progress towards global sustainable development.
The EDD 2019 will examine and discuss the goals of the 2030 Agenda and the EU’s
commitment to addressing inequalities.
The EDD 2019 forum – addressing inequalities: building a world which leaves no one behind – will be structured around the three main themes: Why inequalities matter for sustainable development; understanding the structural causes of inequalities; Working better together through more effective policies to address inequalities; and the 5 “Ps” of the 2030 Agenda: People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, Partnership.”
“Everyone is given a voice in this open, collaborative and inclusive platform. Each year, the global development community is invited to contribute directly to the official EDD programme by proposing activities and sessions.
Each year, the forum attracts more than 8 000 participants from over 140 countries worldwide, representing 1 200 organisations from the development community.”
The forum fosters a true spirit of partnership with all development actors. Since its launch in 2006, the forum has been an incubator of new ideas to bring about real change towards a poverty-free, sustainable and fairer world, where everyone has the opportunity for a decent life.
Concluding his two and a half year term, the President of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani reiterates his proposal of the Marshal Plan for Africa. The European Union should work with African partners to address the root causes of migration flows, Tajani insists.
The president repeatedly proposed a “true Marshall Plan” to become a part of the next EU budget in order to attract investment, infrastructure and to develop an industrial base while creating hope and prospects for the next generations.
Through his mandate president Tajani has promoted Marshall Plan for Africa from different fora, requesting to create EUR50 billion fund to invest massively in infrastructure, and develop industrial base.
Sub-Saharan Africa remains a region of stark political and socio-economic contradictions and multiple longstanding challenges. While a large number of countries de jure have adopted democratic principles of governance, the overwhelming majority of states de facto are governed by authoritarian and semi-authoritarian leaders. Autocratic regimes, civil strife, weak institutions and fragile political systems continue to undermine anti-corruption efforts.
Vienna, Austria. At Africa-Europe Forum, hosted jointly by the Austrian Presidency of the EU, notably by Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, and Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda and the Chairman of the African Union for 2018, President Jean-Claude Juncker reiterated Europe’s ambition for a true and fair partnership among equals between Africa and Europe. President Juncker presented the first results of the Africa–Europe Alliance for Sustainable Investment and Jobs, just three months after its launch. The Alliance aims to deepen the economic and trade relations between the two continents, in order to create sustainable jobs and growth.
“Europe and Africa share a long history and a bright future. This is why I proposed a new Africa-Europe Alliance for Sustainable Investment and Jobs, to help attract both European and African investment and create 10 million jobs in Africa over the next five years. Translating words into action, we have already taken a series of measures to bring our ambitions to life” European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said.
The president is accompanied to the high-level Forum by vice-president Andrus Ansip, Commissioner for Neighbourhood Policy Johannes Hahn, Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica, Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan and Commissioner for Digital Economy Mariya Gabriel.
The Africa-Europe Alliance, announced by president Juncker in his 2018 State of the Union Address, focuses on four key areas. Three months on, work is already well underway in each.
The EU External Investment Plan aims to raise significant sustainable investments in Africa and European neighbourhood countries by 2020. From the €44 billion announced, programmes already in the pipeline will mobilise €37.1 billion of investments.
New projects were announced today:
- An EU guarantee (NASIRA Risk-Sharing Facility), the first of its kind under the EU External Investment Plan, will use worth €75 million of EU funds to leverage up to €750 million of investments for entrepreneurs in Sub-Saharan Africa and the EU’s southern neighbourhood. Alone this is expected to create 800,000 jobs and benefit those who usually struggle to access affordable loans, such as small and medium sized enterprises, internally displaced people, refugees, returnees, women and young people.
- A new Agri-Business Capital fund worth €45 million will support smallholder agriculture by increasing access to finance for individual smallholder farmers. It is expected to attract more than €200 million in investments and benefit as many as 700,000 households in rural areas.
- To support the EU’s southern neighbourhood, a programme worth €61.1 million will supportsolar power plants in Morocco and €46.8 million will be invested in depolluting the Kitchener Drain in the Nile Delta region in Egypt.
Members of Parliaments from Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific gathered in Brussels this week for the 47th session of the ACP Parliamentary Assembly, and a joint intersessional meetings with Members of the European Parliament.
With a limited time before the start of the negotiations for a new partnership framework between the 79 members of the ACP Group of States and the European Union.
One of the key issues of concern for the ACP is the state of preparations, including the shared principles and rationales that would guide the process.
“Negotiations for [a new ACP-EU partnership] are so important that all voices of the ACP Group need to be heard, including parliamentarians, civil society, etc. The ACP we want, must be people-driven… because the issues touch on the ordinary lives of all ACP citizens,” emphasised the President of the ACP Parliamentary Assembly, Hon. Ibrahim Rassin Bundu, MP of Sierra Leone.
During an exchange of views with Brussels-based Ambassadors, the Secretary-General H.E. Dr. Patrick I. Gomes noted the call from representatives for a “radical departure” from the traditional relationship, marked by an “imbalance” between the two blocs of countries in terms of economic might and levels of technology and capacity.
Members urged consolidated efforts to achieve a level of sustainable development whereby ACP developing countries are able to progress from being dependent exporters of raw materials, to being able to add value to their own products.
“The underpinnings of the entire process for a post-Cotonou Agreement rests on the fundamental aim of achieving the structural transformation of ACP economies,” said Dr. Gomes, referring to the current ACP-EU partnership framework known as the “Cotonou Agreement” – a comprehensive and legally binding treaty that governs trade, development cooperation and political dialogue between EU and ACP countries. The agreement was signed in 2000 in Cotonou, Benin, for a period of 20 years.
“On the Sahel and the Horn of Africa, all the Member States, all ministers expressed strong support to an increased work of the European Union in both regions, as both of them are strategically important for the security of the European citizens. In the Sahel, the European Union has few weeks ago provided the first €50 million to the Joint Force of the G5 countries of the Sahel [Mali, Mauritania, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad] to prevent and fight terrorist networks and trafficking organisations in the territory,” – from remarks by High Representative Federica Mogherini at the press conference following the informal meeting of EU Ministers of Defence in Tallinn, Estonia.
“I have seen large support from all Member States on more presence, and a more coordinated presence, of the European Union on the security and defence aspects in the Sahel, as well as on the Horn of Africa. As you know, there our main work is focussing on Somalia and also with the Operation Atlanta that has been fighting very effectively piracy of the coast of the Horn of Africa” – Mogherini concluded.
La signature hier d’un trêve, après deux mois de violents affrontements entre la Coordination des Mouvements de l’Azawad (CMA) et la Plateforme, constitue une avancée importante pour rétablir la confiance mutuelle entre les parties signataires de l’Accord pour la Paix et la Réconciliation au Mali.
Dans ce contexte, le retour hier du gouverneur de Kidal est un pas en avant vers le retour de l’Etat à Kidal. L’Union Européenne salue le rôle joué par la MINUSMA, l’Algérie et le gouvernement malien pour arriver à cet accord.
Les engagements pris par la CMA et la Plateforme doivent se traduire au plus vite dans une cessation définitive des hostilités permettant un accès humanitaire soutenu et la relance des services sociaux de base par le pouvoirs publics dans les régions du nord.
L’Union européenne réaffirme sa ferme volonté de soutenir le processus de paix afin que le Mali et l’ensemble de la sous-région puissent bénéficier d’une paix durable. Le respect intégral des engagements pris dans le cadre de l’Accord d’Alger reste le seul moyen de garantir la paix, la réconciliation nationale et un développement durable et inclusif au Mali.