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[CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 290]
Subject: [CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 290]
Send date: 2011-09-16 20:35:59
Issue #: 106
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. Main ACP-EU events for the week from 19/09 to 25/09/2011
  2. Our video guest: Laura Sullivan, ActionAid
  3. SPC urges regional unity in fisheries management
  4. East Africa wants to trade beyond the EU
  5. 1.5 million tonnes of bananas in Antwerp dock annually
  6. EU-funded goat milk production project to start in Jamaica
  7. Beyond CO2: MEPs demand stricter rules on greenhouse gases
  8. Famine in the Horn Africa: step up emergency response, urge MEPs
  9. Development Bank’s assistance programmes boosted by the CDE
  10. Sharp fall in poor countries' dependency on foreign aid
  11. UK helps give poor countries a voice in global talks
  12. EU gives $14 million to Pacific fund on climate change projects
  13. EU Trade chief De Gucht visits Namibia and South Africa
  14. Aid still benefits companies from donor countries
  15. Humanitarian aid for the Horn of Africa, Sudan and South Sudan
  16. Brussels could save €4 billion in development aid
  17. GMO honey banned in Europe
  18. Lesotho: Commissioner Piebalgs to to announce €15 million aid for water access
  19. Informal meeting of the agriculture and fisheries ministers


  1. Main ACP-EU events for the week from 19/09 to 25/09/2011
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Environment, Gender and development, Migration and development, New Technologies, ACP-EU Fisheries, Food Security, Health and Development, Food Policy, ACP-EU Policy, Humanitarian Aid

    European Parliament
    -19/22 September: Committees in the European Parliament
    Council of Ministers
    -19/20 September: Agriculture and Fisheries Council
    -19/20 September: Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council (informal)
    -19-25 September: General Affairs Council
    European Commission
    -21 September: Weekly meeting of the college
    ACP Group
    -20 September: Bureau of the Committee of Ambassadors

    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 European Commission
    Link ACP Secretariat


  2. Our video guest: Laura Sullivan, ActionAid
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Environment, Food Security

    Laura Sullivan is ActionAid's European Policy and Campaigns Manager. In our interview, she speaks about the EU communication on aid effectiveness, the EU input to the aid effectiveness forum in Busan and a fair EU biofuel policy.


    Link Watch the video
    Link ActionAid
    Link Read the Commission report


  3. SPC urges regional unity in fisheries management
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Fisheries

    Director General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) Dr Jimmie Rodgers has called for regional unity in fisheries management. He stated a need for Asian, American and European fishing interests to connect with the entire region rather than with individual countries so that everybody wins.

    He noted that three Pacific countries are already making bilateral deals with European interests, and this underscores the need to maintain common positions, particularly from the island nations belonging to the Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA).

    At the Pacific members of the African Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) meeting in Auckland this week, talks with the European Union (EU) have proved complicated due to differing regional opinions on the role of the ACP Secretariat and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS). The issues of Rules of Origin and global sourcing for fresh and frozen fish is a key objective of some Pacific islands, while major players like Papua New Guinea want to keep exporting to Europe.

    Port Moresby has inked and ratified an interim Economic Partnership Agreement with Europe in the absence of an inclusive regional deal, and the European Commission (EC) and PNG government are now exploring the implications of sustainable global sourcing under that agreement.

    Meanwhile, Pacific ACP countries might not want to re-negotiate the “global sourcing” concession under its rules of origin provision offered by the EU, reports Islands Business.

    Source: fis.com


    Link Read more
    Link SPC
    Link Commission: DG Fisheries


  4. East Africa wants to trade beyond the EU
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The East African Community (EAC) and European Union head back to negotiations on Monday to resolve the controversy over the delay in signing an economic partnership agreement between the two trading blocs. [...] The EAC and EU hope to negotiate outstanding articles in the interim EPA, which include issues of export taxes, the most favoured nation (MFN) clause, rules of origin and agriculture.

    Source: IPS News


    Link Read more
    Link EU Trade with East Africa
    Link East African Community


  5. 1.5 million tonnes of bananas in Antwerp dock annually
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The last few years SEA-invest invested and took over a lot and this is the moment to keep it. "We are focussing on consolidation. There is also confusion about the future. At the moment the retail in the EU is placing more requirements and wants to spend less on fruit. South-Africa, among others is now focussing more on the Middle-East and other parts of the world because of this. More has to be paid for products, or we won't have them at all", according to Johan Claes, General Director.

    The most important product for the Belgian New Fruit Wharf in Antwerp is the banana. BNFW is officially the largest banana terminal in the world and 2 million tonnes of fruit arrives in Antwerp annually. 1.5 millions tonnes of that are bananas.

    Source: Freshplaza


    Link Read more
    Link EU trade surplus with South Africa grows
    Link EU partnership with South Africa


  6. EU-funded goat milk production project to start in Jamaica
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Food Policy

    The promotion of goat milk production will get under way in Knockpatrick, Manchester, next month under a project being funded by the European Union (EU) and executed by two other international agencies, the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) and the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI).

    "In this particular partnership, we are actually executing the training in husbandry, artificial insemination, and value-added components on behalf of the FAO, using EU money," Albert Fearon, who heads the CARDI animal production unit in Mandeville, told The Gleaner.

    Source: Jamaica Gleaner


    Link Read more
    Link Goat milk the way to go
    Link EU cooperation with Jamaica


  7. Beyond CO2: MEPs demand stricter rules on greenhouse gases
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    The EU should speed up efforts to reduce emissions of fluorinated gases, such as those used in fridges, says a resolution approved by Parliament on Wednesday. While climate policy often focuses on carbon dioxide, MEPs say tougher measures against other greenhouse emissions could be relatively cheap and deliver quick results.

    ."The F-Gas regulation has fallen far short of expectations", says the resolution, which was drafted by Richard Seeber (EPP, AT) and Theodoros Skylakakis (ALDE, HE) and approved with 578 votes in favour, 51 against and 22 abstentions.

    MEPs say the Commission should propose changes to existing rules to speed up the reduction in emissions of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and and the phasing out of ozone-damaging hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). These gases are used in some fridges and air conditioning systems.

    Parliament also wants the EU to reduce emissions of "black carbon" (or soot), e.g.  through stricter testing of car emissions. Black carbon particles have a potent effect because in the air they absorb heat from the sun, and on the ground they speed up melting of snow and ice.

    Action on HFCs and black carbon could begin within 2-3 years and be substantially under way within 5-10 years, say MEPs. Targeting these emissions could be highly cost-effective, they add, since HFCs can be reduced at a public cost of 5-10 cents per tonne, compared to €13 per tonne for carbon.

    Source: European Parliament


    Link Read more
    Link Read the resolution
    Link Commission: DG Clima


  8. Famine in the Horn Africa: step up emergency response, urge MEPs
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Humanitarian Aid, Food Security

    Emergency aid should be rapidly scaled up to prevent any further worsening of humanitarian conditions in the Horn of Africa, say MEPs in a resolution passed on Thursday. Extra funds are needed to pay for food aid, healthcare, clean water and sanitation for 13 million people in Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Eritrea and Djibouti hit by conflict and the worst famine in 60 years.

    Humanitarian aid organisations should have "unhindered access" to those in need and humanitarian corridors should be opened up so that food and aid can get deeper into the affected areas, says the resolution, noting that the government of Eritrea, for example, denies access to any humanitarian aid for its people.

    Source: European Parliament


    Link Read more
    Link Read the resolution
    Link SOMALIA: Food aid stolen from famine victims


  9. Development Bank’s assistance programmes boosted by the CDE
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development

    The Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis last week signed an agreement with the Centre for the Development of Enterprise (CDE), a European Union (EU) funded institution, that will enhance the Bank’s ability to offer technical assistance to its small and medium size enterprise clients.

    Development Bank’s General Manager, Mr Lenworth Harris, who signed on behalf of the Bank, said the agreement, valued at €110,000, was significant as it relates to the productive sector, the engine of much needed economic growth in the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis. CDE Director, Mr Jean Erick Romagne, had signed the agreement documents before they were sent to the Bank for Mr Harris’ signature.

    Source: SKN Vibes


    Link Read more
    Link EU cooperation with St. Kitts & Nevis
    Link CDE


  10. Sharp fall in poor countries' dependency on foreign aid
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, ACP-EU Policy

    Aid dependency among 54 of the world’s poorest countries has declined by a third over the last decade, according to a new report from ActionAid. The Real Aid 3 report also reveals that since 2006 there has been an increase in good quality aid – real aid – from 51 per cent to 55 per cent.

    Some of the world’s poorest countries are now far less reliant on aid than 10 years ago. For example Ghana has reduced its dependency on foreign aid from 46 per cent to 27 per cent, Mozambique from 74 per cent to 58 per cent and Rwanda from 86 per cent to 45 per cent.

    Source: ActionAid


    Link Read more
    Link Read the report [PDF]
    Link Aid effectiveness Forum in Busan


  11. UK helps give poor countries a voice in global talks
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Policy

    The British Government will help rebalance international trade and climate negotiations ahead of crucial talks later this year, International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell announced. The UK will provide legal advice and support to the poorest and most vulnerable countries to prepare for and engage in key talks, including the World Trade Organisation’s trade negotiations and the UN climate change meeting in Durban.

    A lack of access to legal expertise or resources means that the poorest countries can be marginalised in negotiations around their own future, making it harder to reach global and regional trade or climate deals.

    The new Advocacy Fund w ill allow the poorest countries to remain a central part of the World Trade Organisation’s negotiations, joining the UK’s efforts to secure a conclusion to the Doha Development Round that will bring free and fair trade to poor countries.

    Despite ten years of negotiations, the Doha Development Round of trade talks is at risk of failing to reach a deal which gives free and fair market access to many poor and developing nations, denying them the best chance to grow their economy, improve local incomes, generate jobs and pull themselves out of poverty.

    Source: DFID


    Link Read more
    Link Doha Development Agenda
    Link Climate change conference in Durban


  12. EU gives $14 million to Pacific fund on climate change projects
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has announced a 17 million NZ dollars (about 14 million U.S. dollars) Pacific fund for climate change-related projects. Barroso, who met New Zealand Prime Minister John Key in Auckland last week, also called for urgent action on climate change. The European Commission president announced at the forum that it will make the 17 million NZ dollars available to Papua New Guinea and Timor Leste to help combat climate change.

    Following his talks with Key, He told reporters that the EU wanted to renew its engagement with the Pacific region, saying the EU's solidarity with the Pacific was "growing and real."

    The two leaders also discussed the global economy and other issues.

    Barroso also attended the opening ceremony of the 42nd Pacific Islands Forum leaders meeting on Wednesday and met with Pacific leaders in Auckland to discuss the Union's role in tackling climate change in the region.

    Source: Xinhua


    Link Read more
    Link Pacific calls for study on ACP membership
    Link EU climate policies and ACP trade vulnerability


  13. EU Trade chief De Gucht visits Namibia and South Africa
    2011-09-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade

    The EU’s Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht on Monday travelled to Southern Africa to boost negotiations on a comprehensive trade and development agreement between the two regions. On 13 September he met with President Hifikepunye Pohamba and key ministers in Namibia as well as Namibian business representatives, and civil society. He travelled to South Africa on 14 September to meet South African Trade Minister Rob Davies before participating in the EU–South Africa Summit on 15 September.

    "South Africa and Namibia are key trade partners for Europe and these discussions are set to deepen these ties further", said Karel De Gucht. "With a shared vision and a pragmatic approach, we should be able to bring these talks to a successful conclusion in the not so distant future to the benefit of all sides."

    South Africa and Namibia are negotiating a regional comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with the EU in the framework of the Southern African Development Community EPA Group, which also includes Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland and Mozambique. In 2009, Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland and Mozambique signed an interim agreement with the EU. South Africa has a separate deal, the Trade and Development Co-operation Agreement (TDCA), with the EU.

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link German development minister visits Namibia
    Link Trade: Africa still the odd one out


  14. Aid still benefits companies from donor countries
    2011-09-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, ACP-EU Policy

    Aid from the world's richest donors continues to benefit companies from their own countries, despite decade-old commitments to "untie" aid and hand over control to developing country governments, according to a new report.

    Researchers estimate that $69bn – more than half of the total official development assistance – is spent each year buying goods and services for development projects. But much of this money is "boomerang aid" – funds that flow to developing countries only on the books and may never leave the donor countries.

    Source: Guardian


    Link Read more
    Link Read the report [PDF]
    Link EURODAD


  15. Humanitarian aid for the Horn of Africa, Sudan and South Sudan
    2011-09-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Migration and development, Food Security, Health and Development, Humanitarian Aid

    The 3109th Council meeting on General Affairs held in Brussels on 12 September 2011  approved an extra EUR 60 million for humanitarian and food aid in the Horn of Africa and EUR 40 million for Sudan and South Sudan. For the Horn of Africa (the countries concerned are Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Uganda), EUR 30 million will be granted respectively for humanitarian and food aid, whereas for Sudan and South Sudan EUR 25 million will be allocated to humanitarian aid and EUR 15 to food aid.

    These resources come in addition to EUR 64 million already committed from the EU budget in humanitarian assistance for the Horn of Africa and EUR 27.8 million made available from remaining funds under the European Development Fund. For Sudan and South Sudan, EUR 100 million in humanitarian assistance has been provided up to now.

    Source: Council of Ministers


    Link Read more [PDF]
    Link EU representative for Sudan
    Link EU Delegation to Sudan


  16. Brussels could save €4 billion in development aid
    2011-09-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness

    The EU, which is the world's biggest aid donor and gives over €53 billion a year to developing countries, could save €4 billion by managing more effectively the grants and loans it provides to help reduce poverty and achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.

    "I am aware that efforts are still too slow and more efforts are needed. In a period of crisis, we cannot spare any effort to save money whilst increasing the impact of aid," said the EU commissioner in charge of development, Andris Piebalgs, presenting on 9 September the position that the European Commission believes the 27-country bloc should adopt with regard to the effectiveness of international aid.

    Source: Euractiv


    Link Read more
    Link Read the report [PDF]
    Link Concord's reaction to EC report


  17. GMO honey banned in Europe
    2011-09-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    “Bitter honey for the GMO lobby,” quips the Tageszeitung on its front page following the ban brought down by the European Court of Justice on honey containing traces – even minute ones – of genetically modified organisms. “The ruling is a slap in the face for the European Commission, which has left no stone unturned for years to help transgenic agriculture break through into the market – against the wishes of consumers,” writes the TAZ. “

    In Brussels, other proposals for directives are still in the drawers. But with this ruling the Court of Justice has reminded the EU that things are not ‘as simple as that,’” writes the TAZ, which is pleased with the ruling. For the alternative Berlin daily, the decision will slow the “creeping contamination of our food” by GMOs. Importing honey from the United States, Canada, Argentina or Brazil, countries with no regulations on the subject, will now be virtually impossible.

    Source: Presseurop


    Link Read more
    Link Further information
    Link Read the judgement


  18. Lesotho: Commissioner Piebalgs to to announce €15 million aid for water access
    2011-09-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Health and Development, ACP-EU Policy

    European Development Commissioner Andris Piebalgs will arrive for a two-day visit in Lesotho on 12 September. The visit takes place in the context of the country's preparations for local and parliamentary elections while dealing with the effects of a severe fiscal crisis.

    Commissioner Piebalgs will also announce disbursements of €15 million that will enable the country to improve people's access to clean water and sanitation and to further its development agenda.

    During his visit Commissioner Piebalgs will meet the Prime Minister of Lesotho, Pakalitha Mosisili, as well as selected members of his government, the leaders of governance institutions and representatives of the diplomatic community.

    Prior to his trip, Commissioner Piebalgs said: "Lesotho currently finds itself at a critical juncture with two upcoming elections in the next six months. Free and fair elections are the best guarantee for the Basotho people that the country's development will be sustainable and inclusive. I will call for deeper relations EU-between the EU and Lesotho, upgraded at a political level through regular and open political dialogue on cooperation, governance, trade relations and other topics of common interest. "

    The visit recognises the solid partnership between the Kingdom of Lesotho and the European Union. Discussions with representatives of Lesotho will focus on ongoing cooperation, political relations and good governance.

    The visit also confirms the EU's commitment to help Lesotho in its ambition to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, to diminish the social effects of the HIV/AIDS crisis and to recover from its current fiscal crisis. In this respect, Commissioner Piebalgs will visit two EU financed projects:

    • Commissioner Piebalgs will visit the Maseru Waste Water Project Plant jointly with Tamsyn Barton, Director General of the EIB: this project provides improved sanitation to more than 100 000 people in the Maseru capital and represents a successful example of blending EU grants with an EIB loan.
    • Apparel Lesotho Alliance to fight AIDS (ALAFA), which supports the fight against HIV/AIDS among around 40 000 workers of Lesotho's textile industry (See additional info in background MEMO/11/586 for both projects).

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link EU development cooperation with Lesotho
    Link Brussels Briefing on Water


  19. Informal meeting of the agriculture and fisheries ministers
    2011-09-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Food Policy

    An informal meeting of agriculture and fisheries ministers organised by the Polish Presidency of the EU Council and chaired by Marek Sawicki, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, will be held on 11-13 September in Wrocław.

    The meeting will be attended by ministers for agriculture and fisheries from the EU Member States, some EU candidate countries, representatives of the European Commission and the Council, as well as the agricultural organisations.

    The informal meeting of agriculture and fisheries ministers takes place once during each Presidency. The meeting presided by Poland will focus on promotion of the EU agri-food products in the European Union and on the global markets. The discussion will take place in the context of the works on the Green Paper on promotion measures and information provision for agricultural products and will aim at elaborating a common concept of effective instruments allowing to use the funds for promotion to the maximum and implement the coherent goals of the promotion policy.

    The informal ministerial meeting is also an opportunity to present the Polish agriculture. The guests will have a chance to taste Polish wines and regional products, visit a biogas plant, see a craft exhibition and beautiful Polish horses. The informal meeting of agriculture and fisheries ministers will also provide an opportunity for holding a meeting of the Special Committee on Agriculture (SCA).

    Source: Polish Presidency


    Link Read more
    Link Commission: DG Agriculture
    Link Polish Agriculture Ministry



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Isolina BOTO
CTA
39 rue Montoyer
1000 Brussels
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Tel 02 513 74 36
Fax 02 511 38 68
http://www.cta.int/
http://bruxelles.cta.int/

Editor: André Feldhof (feldhof@cta.int)

NOTE
If you have questions or suggestions, please write to us at : boto@cta.int
For more information on the full range of CTA activities please go to http://www.cta.int/
More information on CTA activities in Brussels at : http://brussels.cta.int/
CTA is an institution of the ACP Group of States (Africa, Caribbean and Pacific) and the EU (European Union), in the framework of the Cotonou Agreement and is financed by the EU.
Copyright © 2011 Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation ACP-EU. Email:cta@cta.int
The opinions expressed in the comments and analysis are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of CTA.

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