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[CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 211]
Subject: [CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 211]
Send date: 2010-02-15 23:24:36
Issue #: 27
Content:
Bulletin CTA
 
1

This weblog shares information on key ACP-EU programmes and events
from Brussels relevant to agriculture and rural development in ACP countries.


Date : [DATE]
CTA Brussels Newsletter

Main events in the week
  1. Our video guest: Wolfgang Lutz
  2. Brussels Briefing on Biodiversity 10th March 2010
  3. Main ACP-EU events for the week 15th-19th February 2010
  4. Migrants sent 32 bn euro to their former country of residence in 2008
  5. Fair Miles: Recharting the food miles map
  6. Fruit growers Ivory Coast looking at neighbouring countries
  7. What you must know about Ghana’s Interim EPA
  8. EU considers proposals to break GMO deadlock
  9. Linking EU Trade and Development Policies
  10. Jamaica: Weather-Risk Model for Coffee Industry
  11. Copa-Cogeca Warns of Impact of Retailers Price Wars on Farmers
  12. Post-War and Post-Conflict Challenges for Development Cooperation
  13. Coral Triangle fresh hand lined caught tuna enters Europe
  14. East Africa: EPA deal - impasse on services persists
  15. Renewal of the Mauritania-Senegal fisheries agreement
  16. Towards a common agricultural and Food Policy 2013
  17. SACU: ‘Internal interests first, EPA later’
  18. Increasing Sugar quantities for export
  19. EU commission 'embassies' granted new powers
  20. EU commission justifies Haiti 'visibility' concerns
  21. MPs call for crackdown on global graft
  22. New logo selected for all EU organic products
  23. Parliament approves new European Commission
  24. France backs ban on bluefin tuna trade
  25. Yam research in Africa receives support from European Union
  26. BTC gets a makeover
  27. Commission welcomes the full resumption of cooperation with Mauritania


  1. Our video guest: Wolfgang Lutz
    2010-02-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Archive, Food Security

    Our video guest this week is Wolfgang Lutz. Prof. Wolfgang Lutz is leader of the World Population Program of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), director of the Vienna Institute of Demography (VID) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and Professor of Applied Statistics at the WU-Vienna and Professorial Research Fellow at Oxford University. On the occasion of his intervention at the Brussels Development Briefing on population growth and its implications for rural areas in ACP countries, Mr. Wolfgang Lutz explained to us his approach to demographic statistics. He proposed a qualitative approach  that includes also education as a third variable to the traditional variables of age and gender of the population. Mr. Wolfgang Lutz insisted on the crucial role that female education plays in elevating developing countries from poverty towards development.
    Link Watch the video
    Link IIASA
    Link Briefing on population growth


  2. Brussels Briefing on Biodiversity 10th March 2010
    2010-02-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment, Rural development, Food Security

    On 10th March (8h30-13h00), the next Brussels Development Briefing will discuss the key role Biodiversity plays in rural development, especially for ACP countries.  Issues at stae include: the relationship between poverty and biodiversity, the effects of biodiversity loss in hunger and food insecurity, governance issues, the Intellectual Property Rights’ challenge, farmers rights and economic incentives, policies and legislation at the national, regional and global levels. Speakers include DG of Bioversity International, IUCN, Practical Action, EC, ACP farmers groups...

    For information and registration: boto@cta.int or pruna@cta.int


    Link Read more
    Link Last Briefing
    Link Reports of the Briefings


  3. Main ACP-EU events for the week 15th-19th February 2010
    2010-02-15

    EU Presidency:
    -
    16th February (Barcelone) : Day on the Reform of the Common Fisheries Policy
    -17th-18th  February (La Granja): Informal meeting of Development Ministers

    ACP Secretariat (Brussels):
    - 18th February: ACP-EC Thematic Group III of the Revision of Cotonou
    - 19th February: Special Committe of Ambassadors
     
     
    For more information please consult the calendar on our webpage http://brussels.cta.int/

     


    Link Spanish Presidency of the EU
    Link ACP Secretariat
    Link Council of the EU and Development


  4. Migrants sent 32 bn euro to their former country of residence in 2008
    2010-02-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Archive

    In the EU27, money sent by migrants to their former country of residence, usually referred to as workers' remittances 1, amounted to 31.8 bn euro in 2008, compared with 31.3 bn in 2007 and 19.4 bn in 2004. These figures include both intra-EU27 and extra-EU27 flows. The increase in workers' remittances over recent years was mainly due to a sharp rise in extra-EU27 flows(from 11.5 bn in 2004to 22.5 bn in 2008), while intra-EU27 flows rose less rapidly(from 7.9 bn to 9.3 bn). Consequently, the share of extra-EU27 remittances in the total has risen from 59% in 2004 to 71% in 2008. In 2008, two thirds of the total outflow of workers' remittances from the EU27 came from Spain (7.8 bn euro or 25% of total EU27 remittances), Italy (6.4 bn or 20%), France (3.4 bn or 11%) and Germany (3.1 bn or 10%).

    Source: Eurostat


    Link Read more
    Link International Organization for Migrations
    Link Eurostat


  5. Fair Miles: Recharting the food miles map
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    Today’s food is well travelled. A pack of green beans in a Northern supermarket may have journeyed 6000 miles, or 60. But while food miles loom large in our carbon-aware times, transporting it counts for less than you might think. And there is a far bigger picture. Food is more than a plateful of emissions. It’s a social, political and economic issue that involves millions of small farmers in poor countries who export produce to the North. They have built lives and livelihoods around this trade. By buying what they grow, you’ve clocked up ‘fair miles’. This pocketbook delves into the realities of the produce trade between Africa and the UK, examining both sides of the equation in search of a diet that is ethically, as well as nutritionally, balanced.

    Source: International Institute for Environment and Development


    Link Read more
    Link Fair Trade
    Link Agriculture and Environmen


  6. Fruit growers Ivory Coast looking at neighbouring countries
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    Could new African consumers make good the losses of African fruit exporters on the European market? That is the question large Ivory Coast fruit exporters are struggling with at present. The historical agreement, which during the middle of December ended a sixteen year long banana war between Europe, Latin America, the US and Africa will change much in Ivory Coast as surely as anything. Ivory Coast export to the European Union about 230,000 tons of bananas. But the African market share in Europe will probably decrease considerably during the next few years. The European Union will decrease the import levy on the cheaper Latin American bananas from the present 176 euro per ton to 114 euro per ton in 2017. With this the expense advantage of many producers in Africa and the Caribbean, who since 1993 could import their bananas toll-free in the EU, disappears. The EU make 200 million euro available for the stricken countries, but that is possibly not enough to cover all negative consequences.

    Source: Fresh Plaza


    Link Read more
    Link Factsheet of the UNCTAD on Banana
    Link Banana Trade Figures


  7. What you must know about Ghana’s Interim EPA
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    Mabel D. Awuku, PRO, Ministry of Trade and Industry in Ghana, give san overview of the EPA negotiations. Ghana and European Union trade has been guided by a non-reciprocal trade regime offering tariff preferences for Ghanaian products entering the EU market under the Lome Convention from 1975 to 2000 and of late the Cotonou Partnership Agreement from 2000. However, the preferential trade system enshrined in the CPA operated  under a waiver from GATT Act 1 which obliged  WTO members  to adhere to the principle of non-discrimination. The Waiver was granted in 2002 for  five years ending on December  31, 2007. Ghana, alongside other ACP states requested the European Union to apply for a new waiver from GATT Act 1 to allow her to continue to enjoy the preferences granted under the CPA for exports into the EU market. The request was however denied. An EPA implementation committee shall be established to monitor and evaluate the implementation of the provisions of the Agreement. It is therefore certain that tariff reductions would have financial implications for the government. In this regard, the EU has indicated its readiness to compensate net fiscal losses as a result of the implementation of the agreement. Tariff revenue losses are estimated to be about 50 million euros annually from 2023 when full implementation of tariffs liberation is expected to commence.

    Source: Ghana Business News


    Link Read more
    Link Current state of play in EPA Negotiations
    Link EPA Calendar


  8. EU considers proposals to break GMO deadlock
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    Plans to allow national governments to decide whether to allow genetically modified (GM) crop cultivation on their land could unblock a paralysis in EU GMO approvals, but at the risk of igniting internal market disputes.Proposals from the Dutch and Austrian governments, currently under consideration by the European Commission, have won the backing of several member states, and will be at the top of the new Commission's agenda. If the plans succeed, the proposal could lead to speedier authorization of GM crop varieties. However, some see the plans as fraught with risks and incompatible with the bloc’s internal market laws. They could also ignite a competitive war between GMO producers in different countries and contravene international trade laws.

    Source: Euractiv


    Link Read more
    Link GMO and the EU
    Link GMO and the WTO


  9. Linking EU Trade and Development Policies
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    Lessons from the ACP-EU trade negotiations on Economic Partnership Agreements.The present study is part of a more comprehensive research project on ‘European policy for global development’ funded by the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) under. The project analyses the European Union’s capabilities to manage policy nexuses and looks particularly at new EU initiatives and instruments (aid effectiveness), the institutional setup (aid architecture) and the coherence for development. It approaches issues of coherence and coordination within the EU’s complex system of multi-level governance – encompassing the European as well as the Member State level – in the context of two thematic areas (‘trade’ and ‘security’) and their relation to development policy – as well as the challenge arising for Europe from emerging new actors in this field, in particular China. Focusing therefore on how to strengthen the EU’s policy for global development, the project’s point of departure is that the EU, while being a major actor in international relations, has not fully developed its political potential to shape global development. For this to happen, the EU should, among other things and specifically in the area of trade, (i) manage the nexus between its trade and development policies; (ii) improve the coherence within development policy; and finally, (iii) overcome the constraints resulting from the EU’s complex multilevel structure, involving multiple actors and spheres of competence.

    Source: German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE)


    Link Read more
    Link German Ministry for Development Cooperation
    Link EU:Trade and Development


  10. Jamaica: Weather-Risk Model for Coffee Industry
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development

    Jamaica’s coffee farmers are now one step closer to effective crop insurance coverage, based on an agreement signed on January 26 by Agriculture Minister, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton; Coffee Industry Board Director General, Mr. Christopher Gentles; and World Bank Senior Agriculture Economist, Mr. Diego Arias, to conduct a feasibility study for the introduction of a weather-risk insurance scheme for the coffee industry.  The coffee industry of Jamaica represents one the largest earners of foreign exchange, approximately US$30 million in 2008. However, coffee production has faced many extreme weather events during the past years, mainly hurricanes, which have destabilized the industry as they have caused declining productivity and crop damage. Under the agreement signed today, the parties will evaluate the feasibility of weather-risk management for coffee value-chain operators in the Blue Mountain region. This pilot study is being financed by the World Bank, through a grant from the European Union’s “All ACP Agricultural Commodities Program.” The project will include the following activities: Conducting weather-risk modeling and quantification; Assessing different insurance options based on the technical findings; Creating a weather insurance prototype product;Designing the scheme’s administration and premium collection payouts.  

    Source: Financial Channel


    Link Read more
    Link Jamaican Ministry of Agriculture
    Link World Bank and Agriculture


  11. Copa-Cogeca Warns of Impact of Retailers Price Wars on Farmers
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development

    Copa-Cogeca warned today that EU farmers are increasingly becoming the victims of retailers price wars and urged EU politicians to take action. Copa-Cogeca Secretary-General Pekka Pesonen stressed “This is an unacceptable situation.The downward pressure on retail prices squeezes the entire food chain. The drop in farmgate prices, which is not matched by a fall in production costs, puts an unbearable pressure on producers incomes which plummeted by 12.2% on average last year. In some cases, it drives farmers out of business. Aggressive price competition has also been found to limit consumer choice and cause a disruption in the production of seasonal products such as fruit and vegetables”.Copa-Cogeca consequently urged the EU Commission, Euro-MPs and EU Ministers to rapidly take action. The move came as Euro-MPs agriculture committee debated the issue in Brussels today. It also came before the EU Commission is set to propose later this year concrete legislative proposals designed to improve the functioning of the food supply chain. Copa- Cogeca calls on them to propose measures which rebalance the power in the food chain and contribute to its better operation.

    Source: Flex News Food


    Link Read more
    Link Copa-Cogeca
    Link  Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development


  12. Post-War and Post-Conflict Challenges for Development Cooperation
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness

    Conflict and violence have become an important context for development cooperation during the last decade. Donors not only have to cope with the consequences of conflict in their day to day work on the ground, but also need to develop strategies in the fields of early warning and prevention, as well as instruments for conflict analysis and conflict sensitive approaches for cooperation. At the same time, external actors have been important supporters for many peace processes aiming at the termination of armed conflicts and violence. This study by Sabine Kurtenbach from  the Institute for Development and Peace (INEF) gives an overview on experiences and lessons learnt in post-war contexts, assesses how the donor community is trying to cope with the specific problems  and  analyses the basic dilemmas for development cooperationin these spaces, while the last section formulates some recommendations.

    Source: The institute for Development and Peace (INEF)


    Link Read more
    Link The Institute for Development and Peace (INEF)
    Link Peace and Security in EU Development Policy


  13. Coral Triangle fresh hand lined caught tuna enters Europe
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Regional Fisheries

    The Coral Triangle contains spawning and nursery grounds, as well as migratory routes for commercially valuable tuna species, producing more than 40% of the total catch for the Western Central Pacific region and representing more than 20% of the total global catch. As a response to the new stringent catch-certification policy imposed by the EU, a project partnership was set up between the WWF, government, and the private sector so that fresh and chilled loined tuna caught in Mindoro (Philippines) by artisanal fishermen came onto the EU market with catch certificates verifying that they were from registered boats operating in legalized areas using highly selective fishing gear. A first consignement has now reached European markets. Tuna in the Coral Triangle, which covers also ACP countries such as Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, adds considerably to the economies of many developing nations and supports the livelihoods of millions of people in this region.

    Source:  Business Mirror


    Link Read more
    Link More on WWF
    Link ACP/EU Fisheries Agreements


  14. East Africa: EPA deal - impasse on services persists
    2010-02-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    Although the region has concluded a deal on market access to the European Union, there remain fundamental disagreements on trade in services. The EastAfrican has learnt that the matter will be left out of any deals signed this year as countries want it handled at a bilateral level. Economic Partnership Agreement, deal with rules under which nationals of one country can sell their expertise in the services sector of another World Trade Organisation member country. Uganda's Ministry of Tourism, Trade and Industry permanent secretary Julius Onen told The EastAfrican that Kampala will sign the agreement for market access and development aid this year, but not a comprehensive agreement that includes trade in services, as well as other sticky issues like investment rules and government procurement, until the Europeans "accept the EPA is part of an older agreement (Cotonou) which recognised that the developing world is not equal to the EU," he said.

    Source: AllAfrica


    Link Read more
    Link East Africa signing Trade Agreements
    Link Economic Partnership Agreements


  15. Renewal of the Mauritania-Senegal fisheries agreement
    2010-02-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Regional Fisheries, Food Security

    Fishing licences allocated to Senegalese fishermen in the framework of the Mauritania-Senegal agreement will soon expire. Professional organisations from the two countries, the Conseil national interprofessionnel de la pêche artisanale du Sénégal (CONIPAS) and the artisanal section of the Fédération nationale des pêches (FNP) met in Nouakchott to raise awareness with their governments about the issues arising, including the necessity to mark the boundaries at sea in order to avoid incidents linked to fishermen incursions. Another issue that the two professional organisations will discuss is the renewal of the fishing licences. The latest protocol allocated 300 licences for artisanal fishing boats, with compulsory landings of 15% of the catches, and 10 licences for industrial tuna fishing, with compulsory employment of Mauritanian workers on board.

    Source: Le Soleil


    Link Read more
    Link International Fisheries relations
    Link ACP-EU Fisheries Agreements


  16. Towards a common agricultural and Food Policy 2013
    2010-02-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Food Security

    2009 has demonstrated the scale of the difficulties confronting European farmers. Milk is not the only sector undergoing a crisis, and agricultural incomes are falling almost everywhere. According to Via Campesina, the current CAP as well as the WTO framework on which it is based have shown their inability to resolve problems; on the contrary, they have aggravated them: the number of farms is in steep decline, unemployment is rising rapidly, over one billion people are suffering from hunger, our planet is suffering from global warming, biodiversity is being lost, and there is a rapid increase in the health costs of the dominant modes of production and consumption. In spite of this, the EU does not appear inclined to make changes to the neo-liberal policy that has globalised agriculture and food. Producers and consumers are the main losers, and the profits of agribusiness and large supermarket chains continue to increase. If the EU fails to take action, European agriculture will be endangered, and we shall find ourselves facing a social and environmental catastrophe.

    Source: Eurovia


    Link Read more
    Link Agriculture at a Crossroads
    Link CAP after 2013


  17. SACU: ‘Internal interests first, EPA later’
    2010-02-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Aid effectiveness

    It is imperative for the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) to move towards aligning its internal activities faster before conclusion of a final Economic Partnership Agreement with the European Union, says Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry Jabulile Mashwama. Reports say the EU reckons EPA negotiations could be finalised by the end of the year, if there was “real political will” to settle the agreement. The EPA negotiating bloc comprising Swaziland, South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, Angola and Mozambique is expected to meet internally in mid-February before resuming official negotiations with the EU.

    Source: Swazi Observer


    Link Read more
    Link More on SACU
    Link Economic Partnership Agreements


  18. Increasing Sugar quantities for export
    2010-02-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The 2989th Council meeting on Agriculture and Fisheries held in Brussels on 18 January 2010 took note of the request made by the Belgian delegation, supported by the German, Lithuanian and Austrian delegations, for the Commission to take a view on whether, under WTO rules, it could be possible to increase the quantities for export of out of quota sugar (5391/10), and of the comments made by the Portuguese delegation, as well as of the reply of the Commission representative.

    Source: Council of the EU


    Link Read more
    Link EU Sugar sector
    Link ACP/EU Sugar Protocol


  19. EU commission 'embassies' granted new powers
    2010-02-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness

    The EU has converted 54 out of the European Commission's 136 foreign delegations into embassy-type missions authorised to speak for the entire union. The move follows the coming into force last year of the Lisbon Treaty, which has the creation of a new EU diplomatic corps as one of its main provisions. All 136 commission delegations were renamed "EU delegations" on 1st January. But only the 54 placements were at the same time quietly given fresh powers in line with their new names. The super-delegations have taken on the role previously carried out by the national embassies of the member state holding the six-month EU presidency at any given time. As such, they now co-ordinate the work of the member states' bilateral missions to the countries in question. The heads of the 54 delegations are also empowered to speak on behalf of the EU as a whole. But their statements have to be pre-approved by the 27 EU countries during meetings in Brussels. Twelve are in Asia and the Pacific Ocean: Afghanistan, Australia, China, East Timor, Fiji, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Thailand and Vietnam. The rest are in Africa: Angola, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, the Central African Republic, Chad, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zimbabwe and the delegation to the African Union in Addis Ababa.

    Source: EU Observer


    Link Read more
    Link EU relations with ACP countries
    Link Country Strategy Papers


  20. EU commission justifies Haiti 'visibility' concerns
    2010-02-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness

    The European Commission has said that improving the EU's "visibility" as an aid donor is a secondary concern next to helping the victims of the Haiti earthquake. Commission spokeswoman Pia Arkenhilde told EUobserver on Thursday (28 january) that it is "a complete misunderstanding" to think the EU is trying to compete with the US on image amid the relief effort. "It would be wholly tasteless to enter into a beauty contest in such a situation. The first priority is that aid reaches the right people at the right time," she said."But it's obvious that visibility is part of being effective. It's important for the recipients of the aid to know who they are dealing with and for the European tax payer, the donors of the aid, to see the actions on the ground, in terms of their future engagement," she added.The plan, put forward by French politician Michel Barnier, said the EU force should wear a distinctive uniform as part of measures to make it a more prominent player in the aid sector: "It would include the European flag followed by the logo 'Europe Aid' and the flag of the country of the wearer." Haiti visibility has also become an issue in Brussels' internal squabbles, with Mr Barnier and French MEPs in recent days criticising the EU's foreign relations chief, Catherine Ashton, for not flying the EU flag in the earthquake zone.

    Source: EU Observer


    Link Read more
    Link EuropeAid
    Link Catherine Ashton


  21. MPs call for crackdown on global graft
    2010-02-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    The fight against global corruption has moved to an international Parliament with lawmakers calling for a crackdown on the tax havens in rich nations. There is also a resolution to prevent corrupt leaders in the poor nations from stashing their illegally acquired wealth in the existing tax havens. The resolutions were discussed at a joint parliamentary assembly of MPs from Africa, Caribbean and Pacific nations and from the European Union (ACP-EU) meeting in Brussels. Eldoret East MP, Prof Margaret Kamar, is leading Kenya’s delegation in the meeting that seeks to push the EU to help poor countries recover from the global recession. The lawmakers pushed for strong tax bodies and judiciaries in the poor countries in order to curb tax evasion. The rising food prices, high levels of unemployment and increasing poverty levels also formed part of the discussions. A draft report posted on the ACP-EU official website indicated that the MPs adopted to push the rich nations to honour the USD100 billion (Sh7.6 trillion) annual pledge to help poor nations manage the effects of climate change.

    Source: Daily Nation


    Link Read more
    Link Joint parliamentary assembly EU-ACP
    Link Transparency International


  22. New logo selected for all EU organic products
    2010-02-10
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment, ACP-EU Trade, Food Security

    The European Commission has officially announced the winner of the EU organic logo competition.Over the past two months,some 130,000 people have voted online to choose the new organic symbol from three finalists.The winning design is by Dusan Milenkovic, a student from Germany,who gained 63 % of the overall vote for his “Euro-leaf” logo.From July 1,2010, he organic logo of the EU will be obligatory on all pre-packaged organic products that have been produced in any of the EU Member States and meet the necessary standards.It will be optional for imported products.Other private, regional or national logos will be allowed to appear alongside the EU label.The organic farming regulation will be amended in the coming weeks to introduce the new logo into one of the annexes.The ”Euro-leaf” design shows the EU stars in the shape of a leaf against a green background. It is a very straightforward sign containing two clear messages: Nature and Europe.The winner and the winners of the second and third prize will be honoured by the European Commission's Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development at an official award ceremony that will take place in Brussels in July 2010. The three winners will receive prizes of 6000 €, 3500 € and 2500 €.

    Source: FreshPlaza


    Link Read more
    Link Organic Farming
    Link DG Agrriculture and Rural Development


  23. Parliament approves new European Commission
    2010-02-10

    The European Parliament elected the new European Commission by 488 votes to 137, with 72 abstentions,in Strasbourg on Tuesday.The vote took the form of a single ballot on the whole College of Commissioners, consisting of one Commissioner from each of the 27 EU Member States.

    Source: European Parliament


    Link Read more
    Link European Council appoints the new Commission
    Link The new Commission


  24. France backs ban on bluefin tuna trade
    2010-02-09
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    Within the next fortnight, France will announce its support for adding bluefin tuna to Appendix 1 of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES),according to an article published on the website of French newspaper, Le Monde.The Government declared on Monday that France would back a ban on the international trade of bluefin tuna,which has suffered heavily from over-fishing. According to Le Monde,Environment Minister Jean-Louis Borloo would make the announcement“within a fortnight”.Paris will therefore join the call to get bluefin tuna added to Appendix 1 of CITES, which entails a ban on international trade.This decision is an unexpected turnaround by France, which until now had favoured a less restrictive approach to tuna fishing. If confirmed, the French decision means the EU position will probably shift and come down in favour of a CITES 1 listing.

    Source: Euractiv


    Link Read more
    Link “Sarkozy didn’t have the guts to go all the way”
    Link CITES


  25. Yam research in Africa receives support from European Union
    2010-02-09
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Food Security

    Research on yam improvement in six African countries has received a boost with a donation of US$1 million from the European Union—African,Caribbean and Pacific Science and Technology Programme (EU-ACP),according to a statement from the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA),based in Ibadan,capital of Oyo State,in southwestern Nigeria.The support comes amid global reawakening to the importance of yam as a food security crop in Africa.The research project, tagged “Strengthening Capacity for Yam Research-for-development in Central and Western Africa (SCYReC)”,aims to improve the capacity for yam research-for-development in the region.According to IITA, the project will help in finding sustainable solutions,through science and technology,to the challenges facing the crop and exploit its tremendous potential for food security and poverty alleviation.The institute will manage and implement the project in collaboration with a team of national partners in 13 research institutions in the six countries, including the National Root Crops Research Institute,Umudike, in southeastern Nigeria.

    Source: Afriqueavenir


    Link Read more
    Link International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA)
    Link ACP Science and Technology Programme


  26. BTC gets a makeover
    2010-02-09
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness

    In 1999, the Belgian government established the Belgian development agency, BTC, to implement its development policies. Ten years later, BTC is a major player in the world of development agencies and has adapted to an ever-changing international environment.The concept of a global partnership developed through the adoption by all countries of the millennium development goals,which aim to reduce poverty in the world by 2015. A wide range of development partners are committed to improving the effectiveness of international aid.The common goal is to produce greater impact on poverty reduction. As a result, BTC is reorienting its position. Instead of providing purely technical assistance, the agency will focus more on its role as a national development agency,thereby strengthening its commitment to poverty reduction,in line with the international community.

    New slogan and logo: As of January 2010, BTC will adopt the slogan, “Building a fair world”, to represent its new vision. A stronger and more coherent visual identity will reflect the agency’s values of integrity, respect, commitment, innovation and responsibility. The new logo is based on an interrelated mix of warm and cool colours,representing global partnership and solidarity, integral concepts in all BTC activities.

    Source: BTC


    Link Read more
    Link Key figures of the BTC
    Link Millenium Development Goals


  27. Commission welcomes the full resumption of cooperation with Mauritania
    2010-02-09
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Archive, ACP-EU Trade, Aid effectiveness

    The European Commission welcomes the Council Decision of 25 January 2010 fully re-establishing cooperation with Mauritania and confirms the resumption of enhanced political dialogue with Mauritania’s various political actors.This new decision means that the National Indicative Programme for Mauritania under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF),signed before the coup d’état of August 2008,can now be implemented. This programme has an envelope of € 156 million for activities in the areas of decentralisation and governance (€ 47m), infrastructure (€ 56m), possible general budget support (€ 40m), and other activities including in the area of management of migration flows (€ 13m). The indicative programme will be reviewed on the basis of the priorities of the new government and an analysis of effectiveness and needs.Other projects decided upon before the political crisis, totalling more than € 100m, were resumed in the second half of 2009.Existing contracts, particularly for road infrastructure work, had never been suspended, and nor had humanitarian aid activities.The European Investment Bank has resumed funding of new projects, notably in the mining sector (€ 75m).

    Source: Europa


    Link Read more
    Link Consultations in the Cotonou Agreement
    Link European Development Fund



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Isolina BOTO
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