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EDITO
Wednesday, 26 July 2017
There can be no development progress without aid funding: the share of official development assistance in Germany's gross national income was 0.28% last year - the same level as in the previous year. Says Development Minister Wieczorek-Zeul: "The new OECD figures show that Germany still has to undertake major efforts to meet its international obligations." A binding commitment has been made to increase the ratio to 0.33% by 2006. The German government aims to reach 0.7% by 2014/15. The BMZ is pushing for decisions to be taken soon and advocates a step-by-step plan providing for an interim target of 0.5% by 2010. In absolute numbers, German official development assistance totaled $7.497 billion in 2004, some $700 million more than in the previous year. However, there was no significant increase if the volume is expressed in euros. In total, the international donor community spent $78 billion on development in 2004. International experts believe that these funds must be doubled if the Millennium Development Goals are to be reached.
Wednesday, 11 May 2005
CIDSE, in collaboration with other civil society actors including some members of Caritas Europa, presented the findings of a shadow report on the EU’s contribution to Goal number 8. Going beyond official European reports, the shadow report looks at indicators on global institutional democracy and participation which are missing in the official reports. MDG 8 places the clear responsibility on European Governments to overcome self-interest and become active partners in the fight against poverty. Key bligations on reporting and participation, finance and the reform of aid, trade and coherence, and global governance are the benchmarks of progress. Recommendations presented in the shadow report include:
- Targets on aid allocation – There has been only patchy progress among European donors in increasing aid to the world’s poorest countries which face the greatest challenges to achieving the MDGs, particularly in Africa: larger donors including France, Germany and the UK are well below UN targets. All European countries should set a binding timetable to achieve 0.2% of their gross national income to aid to the poorest countries.
- Action on debt - Most initiatives on debt have failed to integrate considerations of the resources debtor countries need to achieve the MDGs. Future calculation of debt sustainability must include an assessment of the feasible net revenue available to debtor governments. EU donors should cancel the debt of those countries whose debts are unpayable on the basis of human development needs, with resources additional to ODA.
- Trade policy – Developing countries are often denied a level playing field to compete in global trade. Non-tariff trade barriers that impede market access in Europe for developing countries production need to be addressed. The EU should improve the eradication of dumping measures and create a clear schedule for eliminating export subsidies.
- Reform of global institutions – The global structures that maintain poverty and injustice and marginalise the rights of the poorest must be changed. European countries should take the lead in pressing for reform of decision making and increased transparency of the World Trade Organisation, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. Europe needs to raise its game. Every European country should become more energetic – not waiting for European consensus to emerge, but actively pushing for more pro-poor policies, said Paul Chitnis, resident of CIDSE and Denis Vienot, President of Caritas Europa, in a joint declaration to the press after the debate.
Friday, 06 May 2005
From 1 May 2005 anyone looking for information about the EU can turn to a new set of local outlets called the “EUROPE DIRECT Information Network”. The network, spread throughout the Union, takes over from the Info-Points Europe and Carrefours, which traditionally provided the public with facts and figures on EU-related matters to urban and rural areas respectively.
Wednesday, 04 May 2005
The King Baudouin Foundation has awarded today the 2004-2005 King Baudouin International Development Prize to Ousmane Sy from Mali, a man of vision, a pioneer of action with regard to governance in Africa. For the winner, governance is not at all an abstract concept. He has put it into concrete action in Mali through the decentralisation of public management, which has been handed back to the populations, to the municipalities, to the villages, through various processes of democratic participation.
A better balance between control and risk – this is the goal of the revised Financial Regulation proposed by the Commission today. The changes will significantly simplify financial procedures, improving efficiency and transparency in EU spending. New rules should be in place by 2007, in time to allow the smooth functioning of a new generation of EU-funded programmes.