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[CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 281]
Subject: [CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 281]
Send date: 2011-07-15 20:50:49
Issue #: 97
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. Brussels Briefing: The rural transformation agenda in Africa
  2. Main events for the week from 18/07 to 22/07/2011
  3. Zimbabwe-EU - More of the Same?
  4. Africa should gain from wealth
  5. MEP: Change of mindset urgent to save lives in the Horn of Africa
  6. Economic issues dominate Merkel's visit to Angola
  7. MEPs call for end to rape in Congo
  8. Kenya’s farmers expected to earn more from avocado
  9. Africa: Continent of the Future
  10. WTO report acknowledges EU’s firm commitment to open trade during crisis
  11. Reforms of EU tariff preference affects Fiji and Palau
  12. Hearts and minds for ACP-EU relations
  13. European Commission: a fisheries policy for the future
  14. Development of ACP countries: Civil society must play a leading role
  15. EU countries recognise South Sudan
  16. The EU proposes a new GSP as of 2014
  17. Sustainable development victim of short-termism
  18. France signs €326m contract with Cameroon
  19. Senegal proposes 59 projects within EPA framework
  20. Towards a blueprint to safeguard Europe’s waters
  21. Dicussion between Henri de Raincourt and German counterpart Dirk Niebel
  22. ABWU general secretary to push EU for education on EPA
  23. Experts demand concrete results at the Rio+20 summit
  24. Rwanda: EIB confirms commitment to Ruzizi III hydropower project
  25. Guyana president raises climate change issues with EU Commissioner


  1. Brussels Briefing: The rural transformation agenda in Africa
    2011-07-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development

    We are happy to invite you to our next Brussels Development Briefing . It will be held on the 14 September 2011 in Brussels and focus on the “Rural transformation agenda in Africa”. Among our speakers, we are pleased to receive the CEO of NEPAD, Dr. Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, and Prof Peter Hazell from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London.


    Link Read more and register
    Link Dr. Ibrahim Assane Mayaki
    Link Prof Peter Hazell


  2. Main events for the week from 18/07 to 22/07/2011
    2011-07-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Environment, Archive, Regional Fisheries, Food Security

    Council of Ministers
    -18 July: Foreign Affairs Council
    -18/19 July: General Affairs Council
    -19 July: Agriculture and Fisheries Council
    European Commission

    -13 July: Weekly meeting of the college

    You can also read our newspaper “CTA Brussels Daily” (fed by our Twitter account), follow our new Facebook group CTABrussels and our Twitter account CTABrussels to receive up-to-date information on EU-ACP events.


    Link European Parliament
    Link Council of Ministers
    Link Polish Presidency


  3. Zimbabwe-EU - More of the Same?
    2011-07-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Aid effectiveness

    Can one not be forgiven for having a feeling of déjà vu? Zimbabwe and the European Union are set to reactivate dialogue expected to explore ways of normalising relations between the two sides that soured in the last decade after Zimbabwe embarked on its land reform programme to address colonial land ownership imbalances.

    In 2002, the European Union imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe against the tenets governing relations between the EU and African, Caribbean and Pacific countries espoused in the Cotonou Agreement. A report compiled by a team of EU countries established that the EU wanted to effect regime change in Zimbabwe given the impending 2002 elections. The EU says it slapped sanctions on Zimbabwe because of the latter's poor human rights record and alleged breakdown on the rule of law. […] Essentially, the sanctions remain, as does their grave intent to torpedo the status quo that seeks to consolidate the gains of the land reform and the greater liberation of the country from European domination. […]

    And if one were to believe for a moment the reasons of sanctions according to the EU as relating to human rights, then the current attitude of the EU and its Western allies towards Zimbabwe's diamonds provides a clue of what to expect of the meeting. The EU and its allies have been blocking consensus by the Kimberley Process and Certification Scheme on the unconditional sale of diamonds from Marange. They have imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe's diamonds and some reports suggest that EU banks have been urged not to deal with cash from Zimbabwe diamonds.

    Source: AllAfrica/The Herald


    Link Read more
    Link Zimbabwe must guard against EPA
    Link EU fed up with Mugabe’s ruinous policies


  4. Africa should gain from wealth
    2011-07-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development

    The African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group of States has challenged European countries to ensure the natural resources they get from Africa are translated into developing the continent. ACP-European Union (EU) Joint Parliamentary Assembly co-president David Matongo said the engagement between Europe and the ACP should move to a new level of trying to deliver sustainable development for Africa. Mr Matongo, who is also United Party for National Development Pemba member of Parliament, said this at the inaugural session of the 26th meeting of the ACP-EU economic and social interest groups held in Belgium last week. "It is undeniable ACP states are resource-rich. It is therefore unacceptable that the owners of the natural resources, which are in demand in the world, are today themselves the poorest in the world and they have to rely on aid," he said.

    Mr Matongo said the engagement should enable the ACP Group of States to gain greater value from their natural resources. He said the discussion on development as the world approaches 2015 should not be on statistics, but the quality of the remodelling of development, and how much it is impacting on people’s welfare. "The man on the street is not interested in what percentage point the economy is growing, but on whether he has a job, food and employment," Mr Matongo said. On Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), he said attaining the goals will largely depend on economic growth and wide distribution of its benefits. Mr Matongo said for countries which need to make the largest push to attain the MDGs such as the sub-Saharan African countries, the progress is dismal.

    Source: daily-mail.co.zm


    Link Read more
    Link Should Africa be worried about EU Raw Materials Initiative?
    Link EU Raw Materials Strategy


  5. MEP: Change of mindset urgent to save lives in the Horn of Africa
    2011-07-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Food Security

    Euro MP Thijs Berman today criticised East African governments for their lack of policies aimed at rural populations and called on the EU to prioritise food security in its development strategy. More than 10 million people are affected by a severe drought in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Uganda and Djibouti and up to 12 million will be affected in the coming months, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the World Food Programme (WFP) and Oxfam. In Brussels today, representatives of these institutions presented their joint appeal to save lives from hunger and malnutrition and to build resiliency in the region. S&D spokesperson on development, Thijs Berman, said: "This crisis is the consequence of climate change, but also of the failure of policies for rural populations in these countries. "Governments have consistently neglected rural populations, which were traditionally treated with contempt by authorities in the region. Also the EU has neglected rural development for years. A few weeks ago I visited the Turkana region, in the north of Kenya, and I was appalled: I saw people digging with their hands looking for water. They receive little support even though they provide for a large part of the agricultural income in these countries. Pastoralists could live and want to live in rural areas. All they need is access to water - which could be found beneath the surface-, to health services, education and transport. They also need permission to cross borders and conflict resolution to put an end to fighting between tribes over the scarce resources. "We need more than emergency aid; we need a change of mindset in development policy. International actors must strengthen the link between humanitarian and development policies to improve coherence and effectiveness. Food security should remain a priority in the years to come."

    Source: S&D Group in the European Parliament


    Link Read more
    Link Horn of Africa drought: What you need to know
    Link Emergency funding to reach Horn of Africa refugees


  6. Economic issues dominate Merkel's visit to Angola
    2011-07-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Environment

    German economic interests played a key role during Angela Merkel's three-country trip to Africa. In oil-rich Angola improving business ties was a major topic on the agenda for Chancellor Merkel. Chancellor Angela Merkel arrived in the Angolan capital Luanda for a two-day visit on Tuesday July 12, taking up an invitation by the country's president Jose Eduardo dos Santos. The Angolan leader had visited her in Berlin in 2009. It was the first time that a German chancellor has made a state visit to Angola. And she is one of the few European leaders who have even been to Luanda at all in the past few years. […] But Merkel didn’t have a lot of time for this partnership with Angola. A mere 24 hours were planned in Luanda. In addition to talks with dos Santos, she attended a forum with German and Angolan businesspeople.


    Link Read more
    Link Commission: Energy
    Link Angola Government Website


  7. MEPs call for end to rape in Congo
    2011-07-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Archive

    The European Parliament has urged the international community to halt the mass rapes in the Democratic Republic of Congo […] during its latest plenary session. MEPs pressed the European Commission to release additional funds to combat sexual violence in the Democratic republic of Congo. They also suggested the creation of houses for the victims in conflict areas and setting up a pilot project to improve medical assistance for rape victims. The growing incidence of sexual violence in the region prompted MEPs to point out that 170 people suffered rape or physical violence between 10-12 June in South Kivu, where the same armed group had been implicated in similar atrocities during January 2011. MEPs expressed regret that the international community seemingly lacked the courage to act to halt these "horrifically widespread" crimes. "The time has come to go beyond condemnation," they said, adding that "responsibilities should be assumed by the Congolese government, the EU and the UN to take concrete action".

    Source: New Europe


    Link Read more
    Link MEP Michèle Striffler: it is time to stop these atrocities
    Link Read the resolution


  8. Kenya’s farmers expected to earn more from avocado
    2011-07-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Food Security, Archive

    Kenyan farmers can benefit more from export of avocado to the growing demand in the European Union (EU) if they increase their current production, a new report released reveals. Kenya and South Africa are the main African exporters of avocados, with South Africa being the second largest supplier to the EU across the world. "The industry expects demand for avocados in Europe to continue its upward trend in the coming years," said the report released in the capital Nairobi on Monday. The avocado export market intelligence report was done by the Kenya Horticulture Competitiveness Project that is funded United States Aid Agency (USAID), to increase smallholder farmer incomes through enhanced productivity, crop diversification and improved market access. It said much of the demand in Europe is driven by increased awareness of the fruit and its potential uses and benefits.

    Source: foodqs.com


    Link Read more
    Link Kenya Horticulture Competitiveness Project
    Link Kenya row over Somali refugees


  9. Africa: Continent of the Future
    2011-07-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development

    In an exclusive interview with Afronline, media partner of Fortune in Brussels, Belgium, Antonio Tajani, vice-president European Commission and commissioner of Industry and Entrepreneurship at the European Union (EU), explained the ambitions of European multinationals in Africa. He also spoke about the sanctions the commission is studying to impose on European companies that break environmental and social standards of African host countries.

    Source: AllAfrica/Addis Fortune


    Link Read more
    Link Commission: Industry and Enterprise
    Link Afronline


  10. WTO report acknowledges EU’s firm commitment to open trade during crisis
    2011-07-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Regional Fisheries

    In its assessment of the European Union’s trade policy the WTO Secretariat pays tribute to the openness of European markets and the transparency of the EU’s trade and investment regime despite intensified protectionist pressure during the global economic and financial crisis. The report published today concludes that this policy has helped stabilising the multilateral trading system. WTO Member countries and the WTO Secretariat will discussed the report on Thursday 7 and Friday 8 July in Geneva.

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link Read the report
    Link Commission: DG Trade


  11. Reforms of EU tariff preference affects Fiji and Palau
    2011-07-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    Fiji and Palau are two Pacific Island Countries off the list of nations eligible for the European Union’s Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) scheme by virtue of their classification as Upper Middle Income (UMI) economies. […] In March 2010, the EC initiated a public consultation process to review its tariff preference before the EU Parliament agreed to temporarily continue these unilateral trade preferences from 1 January 2012 to 31 December 2013. GSP is a preferential trade arrangement which gives reduced or zero import duty to imports from developing countries. […] “Fiji and PNG are benefitting from the market access regulation (MAR), an arrangement given to ACP countries that have signed an EPA or an interim agreement but have not yet ratified it. “It is like a temporary bridging legislation that is unilateral in nature. However, in the event that Fiji can no longer be categorised as an Upper Middle Income economy by the World Bank and absolves itself from an Economic Partnership Agreement with the EU, it will again become a beneficiary of the GSP. The Everything But Arms (EBA) Initiative is another non-reciprocal preferential trade regime given by the EU to LDCs alone. EBA is excluded from the reform. To date, only Solomon Islands has utilised GSP trade preferences for tuna exports to the EU under the EBA regime, given its LDC classification. Other non-LDC Pacific Island Countries with market access to the EU, like Fiji and PNG have opted to utilise duty free market access under the Cotonou Agreement through the establishment of interim EPAs. PACNEWS understands that preferences offered under the standard GSP are too low and offered to too many competing developing countries to provide any competitive advantage to tuna exporters from the Pacific. […] The EU itself needs to protect its trade and foreign policy interests in a changing global landscape where some of the countries which now pose a threat to its future economic development, viability and prosperity continue to feed off the EU GSP scheme as its major beneficiaries, while the countries which the EU considers as needing these trade preferences the most, are left to compete over the crumbs that fall off the GSP table, PACNEWS was told. The expected entry into force date of the new GSP regime is 01 January 2014.

    Source: Pacific Islands News Association


    Link Read more
    Link EU Delegation to Fiji
    Link The EU reshapes import scheme for developing countries


  12. Hearts and minds for ACP-EU relations
    2011-07-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Regional Fisheries

    The African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) needs to strengthen itself politically while the EU must be prepared to renew its partnership with ACP countries, taking it beyond the donor-recipient relationship. These are some of the opinions set forth in a Special Report on the future of the ACP-EU relationship just published by The Broker, and a conference on the topic organized by the European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM) in Maastricht last week. […] The ACP-EU partnership, sealed by a treaty known as the Cotonou agreement, is due to expire in 2020. As one would expect from a gathering of such prominent stakeholders, most agreed that the partnership is worth renewing. However, it is widely shared that in its current form, the partnership is too much of a donor-recipient relationship. If it was not for the € 4400 million in funding allocated annually to ACP countries from the European Development Fund (EDF), would the ACP in fact exist as a group of states on the international stage? With Mirjam van Reisen, the author of our Special Report, many conference participants expressed their hope that the ACP pursue a more prominent, political position in international decision-making, and explore new opportunities for cooperation with  emerging countries such as China, India and Brazil. Others are more skeptical; pointing out that the ACP group is too diverse and geographically dispersed to operate effectively as a political bloc. Still others believe that the ACP should continue to focus on its role as principal partner for European development cooperation, and strengthen intra-group relations.

    Source: thebrokeronline.eu


    Link Read more
    Link Is there a future for the ACP?
    Link ACP-EU Courrier


  13. European Commission: a fisheries policy for the future
    2011-07-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Regional Fisheries

    The European Commission has presented its proposals for a major reform of the EU Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) on Wednesday 13 June, and set out a radical approach to fisheries management in Europe. The plans will secure both fish stocks and fishermen's livelihood for the future while putting an end to overfishing and depletion of fish stocks. The reform will introduce a decentralised approach to science-based fisheries management by region and sea basin, and introduce better governance standards in the EU and on the international level through sustainable fisheries agreements. When presenting the proposals, Maria Damanaki, Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, said: "Action is needed now to get all our fish stocks back into a healthy state to preserve them for present and future generations. Only under this precondition can fishermen continue to fish and earn a decent living out of their activities." She continued: "This means that we have to manage each stock wisely, harvesting what we can but keeping the stock healthy and productive for the future. This will bring us higher catches, a sound environment and a secure seafood supply. If we get this reform right, fishermen and coastal communities will be better off in the long run. And all Europeans will have a wider choice of fresh fish, both wild and farm produced."

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link Questions and Answers on the CFP reform
    Link EU fails on fleet reductions


  14. Development of ACP countries: Civil society must play a leading role
    2011-07-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Environment, Regional Fisheries, Food Security

    “Civil society must play a leading role in the sustainable and inclusive development of ACP countries,” EESC President Staffan Nilsson declared, while opening the 26th meeting of ACP-EU economic and social interest groups on 5 July in Brussels. The three-day conference brought together delegates from the EU and from most ACP countries: participants coming from civil society, institutions, and socio-professional organizations. The general meeting of the ACP-EU economic and social interest groups takes place every three years in Brussels, to ensure that the views of civil society are taken into account in the implementation of the Cotonou Agreement. The main topics which have animated the conference are the renewal of European Union's development policy, Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) negotiations and the participation of non-state actors in their implementation, support to farmers as a key aspect of food security strategies, and participatory democracy. Representatives of ACP-EU economic and social interest groups participating in the conference adopted a final declaration which called on ACP and EU authorities:

    • to give more space to civil society and non-state actors in the definition, implementation and monitoring of the Cotonou Agreement;
    • to put promotion of agriculture and support to farmers' organizations in the centre of food security strategies in ACP Countries;
    • to take more account of the social dimension in the renewed EU Development policy focusing on poverty eradication, investments in agriculture-related sectors, decent jobs, social dialogue and support to non-state actors consultation;
    • to include balanced economic, social and environmental provisions in EPAs;
    • to involve civil society organizations in the democratic governance of ACP countries.

    Source: EESC


    Link Read more
    Link Read the final declaration
    Link EESC supports ACP countries' civil society


  15. EU countries recognise South Sudan
    2011-07-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development

    All 27 EU member states have officially endorsed the independence of South Sudan despite ongoing differences on recognition of Kosovo and, potentially, Palestine. "On this historic day, the EU and its member states welcome the Republic of South Sudan as a new independent state," the EU said in a formal communique on Sunday (9 July) after the flag raising ceremony in the new capital of Juba on Saturday.

    Source: EUObserver


    Link Read more
    Link Congratulations of Minister Frattini [IT]
    Link Catherine Ashton travels to South Sudan


  16. The EU proposes a new GSP as of 2014
    2011-07-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The European Commission plans to concentrate its import preferences on those developing countries most in need. It will limit its Generalised System of Preferences (GSP), with which it grants specific tariff preferences to developing countries in the form of reduced or zero tariff rates or quotas, to approximately 80 countries due to the emergence of more advanced developing countries which are now globally competitive. At the same, time the Commission seeks to encourage more countries to respect core international conventions on human rights, labour standards, environment and good governance in the GSP+ scheme which grants additional trade concessions to vulnerable countries. [...] Whilst the generous product coverage and preference margins would remain unchanged, a number of countries would no longer be eligible to benefit.

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link The EU reshapes its import scheme
    Link Commission: DG Trade


  17. Sustainable development victim of short-termism
    2011-07-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    If the world is to make any real progress on sustainable development with the renewed momentum sparked by the Rio+20 Earth summit next year, policies need to be better connected to people's daily activities and given teeth by means of proper accountability and enforcement mechanisms, the World Future Council's Maja Göpel told EurActiv in an interview. While little has moved on sustainable development since the 1992 Rio Earth Summit, the topic is back on the public agenda, thanks to stronger scientific evidence of environmental degradation and its visible impacts, said Maja Göpel, 'future justice' director at the World Future Council.

    Source: Euractiv


    Link Read more
    Link World Future Council
    Link Rio+20 Earth Summit


  18. France signs €326m contract with Cameroon
    2011-07-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness

    Henri de Raincourt, France’s Minister of Development, has signed a contract with Cameroon worth €326m over the next five years. In total, this represents the largest aid programme ever carried out by the French development agency. The payout also represents the second phase of a Debt reduction and Development Contract (C2D) between France and Cameroon. France is one of the largest bilateral partners with Cameroon. Between 2006 and 2011, France committed €713m in aid, of which the first phase of C2D counted for €537m. In accordance with the wishes of Cameroonian partners, the second phase of C2D will focus on agriculture, rural development and food security (60% of the total budget), urban development and infrastructure (34% of the total), and professional training (4% of the total).

    Source: French Foreign Ministry


    Link Read more [FR]
    Link Signing of the C2D [FR]
    Link French Embassy in Cameroun


  19. Senegal proposes 59 projects within EPA framework
    2011-07-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    Senegal has created an institutional framework to oversee the implementation of 59 projects that will be presented to the EU as part of its regional evaluation of economic partnership agreements (EPA), now known as the EPA Development Programme (PAPED). However, Senegal still needs to review its own national institutional system, as discussed during a workshop in Dakar. Cheikh Sadibou Seck, Director of Foreign Trade and Executive Secretary of the National Committee on International Trade Negociations (CNNCI), told participants that negotiations among West African regional experts were still underway because of persistent differences between the EU and certain African countries regarding EPAs, in particular terms of trade. However, it was not a question of whether to sign the EPAs or not, but rather to present development projects to the EU. As a result, the EU will get its EPA but in the form of development programmes.

    Source: AllAfrica/Sud Quotidien


    Link Read more [FR]
    Link PAPED
    Link EU cooperation with Senegal


  20. Towards a blueprint to safeguard Europe’s waters
    2011-07-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    The EU has already developed for some time a fully fledged water policy that has gradually shifted from addressing mainly health concerns, such as quality of drinking water, to the environmental impacts of major water using sectors like agriculture, industry and households. Since 2000, with the adoption of the Water Framework Directive, water policy has made another step-change taking an integrated approach on the basis of the concept of river basin management aimed at achieving good status of all EU waters by 2015. However, the achievement of EU water policy goals is far from secured due to a number of old and emerging challenges including water abstraction for agriculture and energy production, land use, hydromorphological changes, climate change impacts, etc.

    Source: European Landowners


    Link Read more
    Link The Council adopts conclusions on the protection of water resources
    Link Water sustainabilty key to climate change battle


  21. Dicussion between Henri de Raincourt and German counterpart Dirk Niebel
    2011-07-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, Environment

    Mr de Raincourt, Minister for Overseas Development, received Dirk Niebel, German Minister for Overseas Economic Development, on Tuesday 5 July for a working session. Germany is one of France’s closest partners regarding development issues. Together the two countries account for almost 20% of global official development assistance. At the meeting, the ministers exchanged views on current issues in the development sector. They discussed the Franco-German road map for development, first launched in 2003 and thereafter periodically updated. The road map defines the common objectives in overseas development and the sectors that should be targeted: the environment, infrastructure, education and health. They also discussed international topics such as preparations for the G20 development agenda and concrete proposals to stimulate world economic growth in a fair and sustainable way, particularly in countries in the south. The two ministers also referred to the outcomes and follow-up to the G8 summit in Deauville, preparations for the summit in Busan, South Korea, on the effectiveness of aid, as well as promoting innovative funding for development. Berlin has already implemented a number of innovative funding mechanisms, such as the allocation of revenue generated by auctioning quotas on CO2 emissions. Also on the agenda were the European policy on development, and its budgetary prospects, the coordination of aid programmes of member states and its intervention in countries south of the Mediterranean in support of current reforms underway. Germany and France are the top donors to the European Development Fund (EFD), each contributing almost 20% of the total budget. Finally, the ministers discussed regional policies and the possibilities of joint initiatives. One of the questions was the EU strategy for the Sahel region, which was adopted by the Foreign Affairs Council last March and which provides the EU with an approach that combines security issues with development, the terms of European aid in support of the Arab Spring, as well as the Libyan crisis.

    Source: French Foreign Ministry


    Link Read more [FR]
    Link German development ministry
    Link G8 Summit in Deauville


  22. ABWU general secretary to push EU for education on EPA
    2011-07-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    General Secretary of Antigua and Barbuda Workers Union, David Massiah wants the European Union to play a greater role in public education on the benefits of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA). Massiah said he would be using the 26th meeting of economic and social interest groups of the Africa, Caribbean, Pacific and EU regions in Belgium to press his demands. He has been invited, along with nearly 200 other participants from the Caribbean, Europe, and Africa, to the summit on sustainable development. Massiah said he’s anxious to let the leaders of the EU know that the EPA, which is meant to help Caribbean and European businesses trade more easily with each other, isn’t living up to promise. “We are quite aware that a number of the local people do not understand, the acronym of EPA and what it means for them and how the European Union being the bigger partners in here, the kind of role, the further assistance that we need to get as a region and as a country and so these are things that need to be accentuated in a very large way to these people,” Massiah said. “We need in the Caribbean to find some further assistance,” Massiah added. The meeting took place from July 5 to 7.

    Source: Antigua Observer


    Link Read more
    Link EU-EPA Negotiations
    Link Meeting: ACP-EU interest groups


  23. Experts demand concrete results at the Rio+20 summit
    2011-07-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    20 years after the UN conference on environment and development in Rio de Janeiro, the United Nations want to see the results achieved thus far in 2012. A year ahead of the “Rio+20” conference on sustainable development (UNCSD), 13 high-ranking experts from seven countries have sent a statement to their governments, asking them to prepare concrete decisions for the summit. The summit must not only contain empty promises, the scientists demand. The Rio+20 conclusions should facilitate the transition to a global green economy as well as starting the necessary institutional reforms to achieve this, the scientists state in a document with the title "Now is the Time! Why Rio+20 must succeed". It was co-drafted by Steffen Bauer and Prof. Dirk Messner of the German Development Institute (DIE). Often, says DIE, former summit meetings have produced but empty words and compromises. The slow pace of the UN climate negotiations, the impotence of the United Nations Environment Programme and the recent failure of the UN commission for sustainable development which could not even agree on a comment closing statement, shows how urgent it is to have a fundamental institutional re-orientation of the United Nations in the area of environment and sustainable development. If Rio+20 fails, it puts the legitimacy of the United Nations in the area of sustainable development in question, DIE warns. It is even more important to use the remaining time to present a substantial reform proposal to the head of governments at the beginning of the summit that has the power to obtain a majority.

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


    Link Read more [DE]
    Link Rio+20 Conference
    Link German Development Institute


  24. Rwanda: EIB confirms commitment to Ruzizi III hydropower project
    2011-07-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Environment

    The European Investment Bank, the long-term lending institution of the European Union and world’s largest multinational lending body, confirmed that it will work closely with financial preparation of the Ruzizi hydroelectric project to be launched in Kigali. This marks the start of a second financial stage of preparations in the Ruzizi project. Leading development finance institutions who recognise the scheme’s clear potential contribution to electricity generation in the Great Lakes region will now discuss possible financing of the project, following completion of detailed technical feasibility studies. The European Investment Bank and European Union have played a leading role in bringing together political and financial support for the project and examining the technical, institutional and financial feasibility of building a 147 MW hydropower plant on the Ruzizi River. This landmark scheme has the potential to transform electricity supply to Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo, and would represent the first public-private sector energy engagement in the Great Lakes region. The Ruzizi project has the potential to transform energy availability for an estimated 107 million people living in the Great Lakes region. Energy use is currently dominated by use of charcoal for cooking and electrification can contribute significantly to economic development.

    Source: EIB


    Link Read more
    Link Ruzizi III Project
    Link EU Delegation to Rwanda


  25. Guyana president raises climate change issues with EU Commissioner
    2011-07-11
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    Guyana’s President Bharrat Jagdeo has raised the issue of undisbursed climate change funds with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and Andris Piebalgs, the European Commissioner from Latvia, both of whom attended the 32nd CARICOM Heads of Government Conference in Basseterre, St Kitts. Jagdeo said he raised the issue from the perspective of the undistributed funds pledged as part of the Copenhagen Accord, under which new and additional, predictable and adequate funding, as well as improved access shall be provided to developing countries to enable and support enhanced action. The accord also allows for developed countries to raise funds of US$30 billion from 2010-2012 of new and additional resources and sets a "goal" for the world to raise US$100 billion per year by 2020, from "a wide variety of sources", to help developing countries cut carbon emissions. New multilateral funding for adaptation is also to be delivered, with a governance structure. Jagdeo said despite this, “The World Bank’s index shows that 10 of the 15 most vulnerable countries to climate change in the world can be found in the Caribbean, yet we have seen very little funds pledged in Copenhagen, and this runs into billions of dollars, flowing to the Caribbean.”

    Source: Caribbean News Now!


    Link Read more
    Link EU Delegation to Guyana
    Link EU launches Caribbean climate project




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