Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

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Tuesday, 19 June 2018
The ACP cotton producing and exporting countries will, from now on, have a website where they can give and receive information about news in the cotton sector. The website offers content in both French and English is one of the elements making up the action plan accompanying the EU-Africa Partnership for cotton, concluded in Paris just about a year ago. At the Paris Form, held on 5th and 6th July 2004, the European Union and ACP cotton producing and exporting countries (all African) approved a partnership and adopted a joint plan of action on cotton intended to support the development of the cotton sector in Africa. The action plan takes in elements relating to marketing and the development of the Partnership. It places particular emphasis on the coordination and communication mechanisms. Th ese two essential factors should be of help in researching the optimal use of the resources made available to support the development of the partnership. It is to this end that the new site has been launched, after the first essential coordination phase which comprised the setting-up of the steering and monitoring committee (COS-Cotton) in September 2004, a permanent forum where the various people involved in the development of the sector take concerted decisions regarding the implementation of the action plan.
This new space where information can be exchanged is an access portal for all the specific initiatives developed in relation to the cotton sector, whether by region, subject or sector. Its aim is therefore clear: to allow all those active in the sector, especially those from ACP countries, quickly to identify, from a single address, the sources to which they can turn to study certain areas in greater depth, according to their requirements. The site, which has just been launched, can also act as a platform for the expression of specific concerns, discussion and interaction between all those active in the sector.
Documents relating to the Paris Forum, notably the partnership action plan, various publications grouped according to the action plan themes, the presentation of ACP participants involved in working on the cotton business, an online discussion forum, the latest developments and news from the sector, a calendar giving some of the major forthcoming events in the sector… This is some of the information available via the site.
To echo the words of Ambassador Euloge Hinvi, Ambassador for Benin and President of the ACP-EU Partnership Steering and Monitoring Committee, “it is now up to those involved to act and make good use of the new web resource being made available, so that it will work to help the development of the cotton supply line throughout the African countries of the ACP Group”.
The CTA supports the EU-Africa partnership on cotton in its information and communication programme (publications, workshops, website, e-forums, rural radio programmes).
The EU-South Africa Joint Co-operation Council was held in Brussels on 7 November 2005. Find attached summary of general discussions. To note that the EU and South Africa reaffirmed the importance of meeting the Millennium
Development Goals in Africa, and emphasised the need for all parties to deliver on the
commitments made this year in support of and by Africans, including those at the Millennium Review Summit. With the envisaged adoption of a new EU strategy for Africa in December, the EU underlined its resolve to deepen the partnership between Africa and the EU. The EU and South Africa agreed to do their utmost to strengthen African institutions and capabilities to address the many and complex challenges facing the African continent.
Sunday, 13 November 2005
The World Summit on the Information Society is held in two phases. The first phase of WSIS took place in Geneva (Switzerland) from 10 to 12 December 2003. It addressed the broad range of themes concerning the Information Society and adopted a Declaration of Principles and Plan of Action. The second phase will take place in Tunis hosted by the Government of Tunisia, from 16 to 18 November 2005. This summit should reach an international consensus on two key unresolved issues from the first phase: Internet governance and financial mechanisms for bridging the digital divide between developed and developing countries. The EU would like to build on progress made in emerging economies by backing wider access to the Internet with comprehensive strategies for developing the Information Society, including the development of creative content and applications.
With respect to financial mechanisms to bridge the digital divide in developing countries, the EU welcomes the voluntary Digital Solidarity Fund created in Geneva in March 2005. However, the EU believes that a more holistic approach is required to mobilise human, financial and technological resources for a better integration of ICTs into development policies.
As regards Internet governance, the question of internationalising the management of the Internet’s core resources, namely, the domain name system, Internet Protocol (IP) addresses and the root server system, is currently being discussed. The EU believes that a new cooperation model is needed to give effect to WSIS wording on the crucial role of stakeholders within Internet governance, including governments, the private sector, civil society and international organisations.
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The PUMA Task Team project is the result of close collaboration between users (53 National Meteorological Services in Africa), beneficiaries (5 African Regional Intergovernmental Organisations), donors (European Commission) and other international stakeholders (EUMETSAT, WMO).
Paul Counet and Harry de Backer from the DG Development at the European Commission explained in the E-Courier the Puma Project.
The African meteorological community created the PUMA (Preparation for the Use of Meteosat Second Generation in Africa) task team project in 1996, with the support of EUMETSAT and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Its mandate was to mobilize the funds needed to grant African National Meteorological Services (NMS) access to the environmental data provided mainly by the European MSG satellite. The PUMA group included 5 regional economic groups (ECOWAS, IGAD, CEMAC, IOC and SADC), the NMS, WMO and EUMETSAT. The project Finance Convention (11 MEUR) was signed in January 2001.
PUMA’s character is exceptional in several regards. This project:
• has a continental dimension with a unique management structure, financed by the EDF and by bilateral funding for non-ACP countries;
• is sustainable, based on tried and tested IT systems and having formed a critical mass of 350 experts;
• is based on a guaranteed minimum 18 years’ free access to the environmental data distributed by EUMETCast.

PUMA has 3 components:
• The EUMETCast receiving stations, allowing data access via the DVB (Digital Video Broadcast) communication standard, perfectly suited to Africa, and based on simple solutions (PCs and TV aerials).
• Training in the use and maintenance of the stations and the use of environmental data. This training has been planned for recognized African centres (EAMAC (Niamey), IMTR (Nairobi), and South African Weather Service).
• Pilot projects facilitating access to the data for African decision-makers as a whole, and not just for the intended beneficiaries of the project. The themes covered were: the monitoring of Kasaï water supplies (DRC), continued surveillance of desertification (Niger), management of the food chain (Senegal), operational use of MSG in southern Africa (South Africa), the degradation of natural resources (Kenya) and fishery management (Mauritius).
The PUMA project ended on 30th September 2005 and achieved all its objectives. PUMA also prepared for the future with the signature, in September 2002, of the “Dakar Declaration” by the Executive Secretaries of the five regional economic groupings. This asks the EC to launch a new initiative called AMESD (African Monitoring of the Environment for Sustainable Development). AMESD is based on the exploitation of the technical, institutional and thematic achievements of PUMA. AMESD will lay the foundations for the African component of the European initiative on Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES).
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Madagascar: an additional 133 million euro European subsidy for Madagascar

The European Commission has announced an additional 133 million euros in aid to Madagascar. This announcement was made at a meeting in Brussels with members of the Malagasy Government in order to implement the mid-term revision of the 9th EDF (European Development Fund). This new budgetary envelope will be used to build up current programmes such as rural development and decentralisation, with expansion onto other sectors such as education, development of the capital city, water and energy. The Head of the European Commission in Madagascar also announced an annual review of the Commission’s programme at the end of November. Furthermore, the amount of the 10th EDF for the 2007-2013 period will be made known at the end of this year.
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