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[CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 344 ]
Subject: [CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter N° 344 ]
Send date: 2012-11-19 09:38:27
Issue #: 161
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 : [19/11/2012]
CTA Brussels Newsletter

 

Main events in the week
  1. Main Events for the Week 19/11/2012 – 25/11/2012
  2. FAO calls for action to break cycle of hunger in dryland countries
  3. Fisheries: EU proposes action plan to protect seabirds
  4. New FAO report urges caution on large-scale land acquisitions in developing countries
  5. Our Video Guest : Kolli N. Rao, Chief Risk Officer in AIC
  6. EU supports largest solar power plant in West Africa
  7. EU 2012 Nobel Peace Prize money for children affected by war
  8. Women on board: 40% quota approved
  9. EU warns eight countries over insufficient action to fight illegal fishing
  10. The Council of the EU agrees on the new Food Assistance Convention
  11. EU Finance Ministers reaffirm their commitment to fast start finance
  12. New European framework for quality schemes in agriculture
  13. EU on verge of 'historic opportunity' to help Africa
  14. Newsletter SOS Faim - Novembre 2012
  15. 5th edition of the PAERIP IN-FOCUS Newsletter
  16. EU fogs post-2012 climate aid pledges
  17. EU finance ministers must step up climate cash flows to poor countries
  18. Support program for African women researchers renewed
  19. EU to support Niger establish food security and resilience to crisis
  20. Ascending Africa – Opportunities and Challenges Summit in Brussels
  21. EU leaders urged to 'stand up and fight' for overseas aid
  22. AUC and CTA sign MoU to strengthen agricultural policies in Africa
  23. The European Food agency wants to strengthen EU risk assessment


  1. Main Events for the Week 19/11/2012 – 25/11/2012
    2012-11-16
    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 November: European Parliament committee meetings
    -    19-22 November: European Parliament plenary session


    European Commission:
    -    19 November: Conference on agricultural productivity and sustainability
    -    22-23 November: Equality summit 2012


    European Council:
    -    22-23 November: European Council


    Council of the EU
    -    19 November: Foreign Affairs Council
    -    20 November: General Affairs Council


    ACP Group:
    -    19- 23 November:  World Cocoa Conference
    -    21-22 November: 6th Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD)
    -    22-25 November: 30th Session of the ACP PA and 24th Session of the Joint ACP-EU PA

     

    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.




  2. FAO calls for action to break cycle of hunger in dryland countries
    2012-11-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment, Rural development

    Conflict, recurrent drought and volatile food prices have countries in Africa and the Near East in a hunger trap, although there is a way out, FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva told the International Conference on Food Security in Drylands on Wednesday 14 November  in Doha, Qatar.
    "Natural resources degradation in dryland countries threatens more than two billion people," Graziano da Silva warned. He called upon the international community to work closely with dryland countries to break the cycle of hunger, highlighting the need among others to improve information on drylands to support sustainable management of land and water resources, scale up the sustainable intensification of agriculture and adapt production to climate change, build resilience in rural communities and increase responsible investments in agriculture and rural development, and strengthen global food security governance, building on the Committee on World Food Security (CFS), the intergovernmental food policy body.
    The two-day conference brings together government, academia, development agencies and banks, civil society and the private sector from 60 countries to discuss food security, water and investment in dryland countries.


    Source: FAO


    Link Read more
    Link Find out more about FAO
    Link Doha Climate Change Conference


  3. Fisheries: EU proposes action plan to protect seabirds
    2012-11-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Fisheries

    The European Commission adopted on Friday 16 November an Action Plan to address the problem of incidental catches of seabirds in fishing gears.
    The new Plan sets up focuses on long line and static net fisheries where seabird bycatch are known to be highest, although other gears such as trawls and purse seines are also covered by the plan. It entails a wide range of elements under 30 recommended actions that are a combination of binding and non-binding measures. The rules will apply to EU fishing vessels inside and outside EU waters as well as non-EU vessels operating in EU waters.Specific short-term actions include: more rapid implementation of fisheries management measures to protect seabirds within Special Protection Areas (SPAs) designated under the Birds Directive;  undertaking more extensive monitoring of fisheries where information on seabird bycatch is lacking or uncertain;  implementing proven mitigation measures (such as the use of bird-scaring lines and acoustic deterrents or the use of weighted lines) in long line fisheries in EU and non-EU waters where bycatch is highest; and instigating research into the development of practical and efficient mitigation measures particularly in static net fisheries.
    Interactions between fisheries and seabirds are frequent and widespread leading to levels of incidental seabird mortality which pose a serious threat to many seabird populations and which have an adverse effect on fishing productivity and profitability. The International Council for the Exploration of Sea (ICES) estimates conservatively that more than 200,000 seabirds die every year as a result of contact with the EU fishing fleet in EU and non-EU waters.


    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link Read the Action Plan
    Link Find Out more about EU' Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Policy


  4. New FAO report urges caution on large-scale land acquisitions in developing countries
    2012-11-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Food Security, Food Policy

    International investments that give local farmers an active role and leave them in control of their land have the most positive effects on local economies and social development, according to a new FAO report published on Tuesday 13 November.
    The report, Trends and Impacts of Foreign Investment in Developing Country Agriculture, emphasizes that investment projects that combine the strengths of the investor (capital, management and marketing expertise, and technology) with those of local farmers (labour, land, local knowledge) are most successful.
    Business models that leave farmers in control of their land give them an incentive to invest in land improvements and also favor sustainable development. The publication offers a number of case studies on the impact of foreign investment in Africa and Asia, including large-scale land deals often referred to as land grabbing.
    "While a number of studies document the negative impacts of large-scale land acquisition in developing countries, there is much less evidence of its benefits to the host country, especially in the short-term and at local level," says the report. "For investments involving large-scale land acquisition in countries where land rights are unclear and insecure, the disadvantages often outweigh the few benefits to the local community," it notes. The report advises that "acquisition of already-utilized land to establish new large farms should be avoided and other forms of investment should be considered."
    FAO estimates that investment to the amount of more than $80 billion a year is needed to keep pace with population and income growth, and feed more than 9 billion people in 2050.
    Although Foreign Direct Investment has risen significantly, especially in Asia and Latin America over the past decade, only a small share goes to agriculture -- less than five percent in sub-Saharan Africa. This represents an opportunity, however, given the high potential for growth, particularly in the light of currently high international food prices.

     

    Source: FAO


    Link Read more
    Link Read FAO new report
    Link Find out more about FAO


  5. Our Video Guest : Kolli N. Rao, Chief Risk Officer in AIC
    2012-11-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Food Security

    At the 29th Brussels Development Briefing on ‘Climate change, agriculture and food security’ we sat down with Kolli N Rao, Chief Risk Officer and head of the ‘Technical’ and ‘Reinsurance’ department in Agriculture Insurance Company of India, to discuss the case of index-based insurance and its advantages for small sized holdings and low value crops.


    Link Watch the Video


  6. EU supports largest solar power plant in West Africa
    2012-11-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, Environment, New Technologies

    The European Union announced on Wednesday 14 November its support for the construction of what will be the largest African photovoltaic power plant, in Burkina Faso. It will provide 32 gigawatt hours per year, the equivalent of 6% of the country's current electricity production. This will cover the energy consumption of around 400,000 people.
    EU support for the power plant amounts to €25 million; the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the French Development Agency (AFD) will also provide loans of a total of €38 million.
    EU Development Commissioner Piebalgs said: "More than 1 billion people on the planet do not have access to electricity, half of them in Africa. This is one of the greatest brakes on Africa's development. To unlock this huge potential the EU pledged to connect 500 million people to energy and we put our money where our mouth is. "
    Piebalgs made the announcement before departing to Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) where he will attend the Conference of African Energy Ministers and All Africa Energy Week.
    Located in Zagtouli, on the outskirts of the capital Ouagadougou, the new power plant will comprise 96,000 solar panels. Currently, only 15% of the Burkinabe population have access to electricity and the country still heavily depends on energy imports.
    The EU is the biggest donor in energy worldwide. The EU has invested more than €2 billion over the last five years on energy projects in developing countries and more than €1 billion on improving the state of the energy sector in Africa.

     

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link Find out more about the European Union's work on energy
    Link Commission's new initiative to help achieve energy access for all by 2030


  7. EU 2012 Nobel Peace Prize money for children affected by war
    2012-11-16
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Humanitarian Aid

    The European Union will use its 2012 Nobel Peace Prize money for projects helping children affected by war and conflicts across the world.
    On 12 October the Nobel Prize Committee decided to award the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize to the European Union for its contribution to peace, reconciliation and democracy in Europe. The Prize Award Ceremony shall take place in Oslo on 10 December 2012.
    The Commission has formally accepted the prize money on behalf of the European Union and states that the approximate €930, 000 will be allocated to children that are most in need. In the coming weeks, the Commission will decide on the details of the project, including the precise terms of reference, beneficiaries' selection process and legal and budgetary aspects.
    The European Commission's department for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection ECHO has been working to support children affected by conflicts around the world, in countries such as Chechnya, the Republic Democratic of Congo, Burma/Myanmar, Somalia, Colombia, Uganda, Afghanistan, Yemen, Pakistan, the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Mali, Syria, etc.
    Assistance covers a large range of activities, such as providing shelter, clean water, food and the most basic household items to families that were displaced by armed clashes and lost everything. Children are given special attention to be kept from malnutrition. Education in emergencies is also a priority to provide children with a safe environment and offer them a future.

     

    Source: The European Commission

     


    Link Read more
    Link Find out more about Nobel Peace Prize 2012
    Link Find out more about Community Humanitarian Office (ECHO)


  8. Women on board: 40% quota approved
    2012-11-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Gender and development

    The European Commission has proposed on Wednesday 14 November legislation with the aim of attaining a 40% objective of the under-represented sex in non-executive board-member positions in publicly listed companies.
    The proposed Directive sets an objective of a 40% presence of the under-represented sex among non-executive directors of companies listed on stock exchanges. Companies which have a lower share (less than 40%) of the under-represented sex among the non-executive directors will be required to make appointments to those positions on the basis of a comparative analysis of the qualifications of each candidate, by applying clear, gender-neutral and unambiguous criteria. Given equal qualification, priority shall be given to the under-represented sex. The objective of attaining at least 40% membership of the under-represented sex for the non-executive positions should thus be met by 2020 while public undertakings – over which public authorities exercise a dominant influence – will have two years less, until 2018. The proposal is expected to apply to around 5 000 listed companies in the European Union. It does not however apply to small and medium-sized enterprises (companies with less than 250 employees and an annual worldwide turnover not exceeding 50 million EUR) or non-listed companies.
    Vice-President Viviane Reding, the EU's Justice Commissioner, said "The example set by countries such as Belgium, France and Italy, who have recently adopted legislation and are starting to show progress, clearly demonstrates that time-limited regulatory intervention can make all the difference. The Commission's proposal will make sure that in the selection procedure for non-executive board members priority is given to female candidates – provided they are under-represented and equally qualified as their male counterparts."
    85% of non-executive board members and 91.1% of executive board members are men, while women make up only 15% and 8.9% respectively.
    Despite Commission’s enthusiasm, the initiative was received largely with distrust by the international press and some Member State governments.

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link Press reaction to Women on Boards plan
    Link  Women in economic decision-making in the EU: Progress report


  9. EU warns eight countries over insufficient action to fight illegal fishing
    2012-11-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Fisheries, ACP-EU Trade

    The European Commission adopted on 15 Novemeber a Decision indicating to 8 third countries that their track record in tackling illegal fishing is insufficient, and that they risk being identified as countries it considers non-cooperative in the fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. These countries are: Belize, Cambodia, Fiji, Guinea, Panama, Sri Lanka, Togo and Vanuatu.
    Today's decision is the first of its kind and it highlights that these countries are not doing enough to fight illegal fishing. It identifies concrete shortcomings as not fulfilling duties as flag, coastal, port or market States – duties that are laid down in international law, such as the provisions of Regional Fisheries Management Organizations.
    The decision does not entail any trade-affecting measures. The Commission has proposed an action plan for the remediation of the situation in each country. Should the situation not improve, the EU could take further steps, which could entail trade measures such as a ban on selling fisheries products to the EU.
    European Commissioner Maria Damanaki, in charge of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, said: "This is not a black list, but a yellow card. We want these countries as partners to combat illegal fishing. But we also want to signal to the world that the EU will not tolerate IUU fishing - a criminal activity which undermines the livelihood of fishing communities and depletes fish stocks. It must be eradicated by all means."
    The fight against illegal fishing is part of the EU drive to ensure the sustainable use of the sea and its resources. As the world's biggest fish importer the EU aims to close its markets to illegally caught fish. The estimated global value of IUU fishing is approximately 10 billion Euros per year, and it is said to account for 19% of the reported value of catches.


    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link Illegal fishing (IUU)
    Link Council Regulation


  10. The Council of the EU agrees on the new Food Assistance Convention
    2012-11-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, Humanitarian Aid

    The Council of the European Union decided on Tuesday (13 November) on the EU conclusion of the new Food Assistance Convention, an important international agreement on the fight against hunger and under-nutrition. Together with the European Parliament's consent on 25 October, this decision gives “green light” to the EU to ratify the Convention by 30 November.
    Kristalina Georgieva, EU Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, warmly welcomed the Council decision and called on all parties, especially the EU Member States, to ratify the Convention as quickly as possible. ‘One of the most important achievements of the new Convention is a fundamental shift in the approach to food assistance. I very much appreciate that the Convention signatories agree to distribute food only when strictly necessary to meet the immediate nutritional needs of the most vulnerable people. Otherwise, aid should come in the form of money so that affected people can buy food locally. This upholds their dignity, helps promote local markets, and benefits local farming and food supply systems,’ said Commissioner Georgieva.
    The Food Assistance Convention is an international agreement that has been negotiated by the European Union and 35 countries (all EU Member States plus Argentina, Australia, Canada, Croatia, Japan, Norway, Switzerland and the United States). The Convention was signed by Commissioner Georgieva together with the Cyprus Presidency on behalf of the EU on 1 August 2012. It is expected for the new Convention to come into force 1 January 2013.

     

    Source: European Commission


    Link Read more
    Link The text of the new Food Assistance Convention
    Link The European Commission's humanitarian aid on food assistance policy


  11. EU Finance Ministers reaffirm their commitment to fast start finance
    2012-11-15
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    EU Finance Ministers meeting in Brussels, Belgium reaffirmed on November 13 their commitment to fast start finance, an agreement between the developed countries to strengthen their resilience to climate change and mitigate their greenhouse gas emissions, signed during the Conference of the Parties (COP15) held in December 2009 in Copenhagen.
    The ministers stressed the importance of fast-start finance for the immediate implementation of the Cancun Agreements and endorsed the "fast-start measures" to be presented at the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP 18) from 26 November till 7 December 2012 in Doha and the indicative list of individual actions funded.  
    They also underlined that the EU will continue to take into account the needs of the particularly vulnerable developing countries, including the Small Islands Developing States, the Least Developed Countries and Africa.
    To date, a total of €7.1 billion has been mobilized by the EU to meet its fast-start commitment.

     

    Source: Council of the European Union


    Link Read more
    Link Key CTA Briefing to push climate change and green growth agenda in the Pacific
    Link EU fogs post-2012 climate aid pledges


  12. New European framework for quality schemes in agriculture
    2012-11-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Food Security, Food Policy

    The Council of the European Union adopted on Tuesday 13 November a regulation on quality schemes for agricultural products and foodstuffs which should achieve a simplified regime under one single legal instrument, and a more robust framework for the protection and promotion of quality agricultural products.
    The main elements of the regulation include the reinforcement of the existing scheme for protected designations of origin and geographical indications (PDOs and PGIs); overhauling the traditional specialties guaranteed scheme (TSGs), and laying down a new framework for the development of optional quality terms to provide consumers with further information.

     

    Source: Council of the European Union


    Link Read more
    Link EU agricultural product quality policy
    Link Geographical indications and traditional specialities


  13. EU on verge of 'historic opportunity' to help Africa
    2012-11-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, ACP-EU Trade, Rural development

    EU Commissioner for development Andris Piebalgs says the world "stands on the brink of a truly historic opportunity" to improve the lives of people in Africa. Speaking on Tuesday at the Development Policy Forum annual policy summit in Brussels, he said he wanted to "bring lasting growth and prosperity to the whole of Africa".
    The official was the keynote speaker at an event organized by Friends of Europe, the Brussels-based leading think tank. Addressing an audience of NGOs and other groups, he said the international community was "well on our way to eradicating desperate poverty in our lifetime" and that "Every citizen on the planet should expect and demand from their governments at the very latest by 2030, with, where necessary, for the poorest countries, the support of the international community."

     

    Source: The Parliament


    Link Read more
    Link Ascending Africa – Opportunities and Challenges Summit in Brussels
    Link Speech of Andris Piebalgs, EU Commissioner for Development


  14. Newsletter SOS Faim - Novembre 2012
    2012-11-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, Rural development, Gender and development, Environment, Health and Development, Humanitarian Aid

    SOS Faim has issued the newsletter for the month of November.
    The newsletter includes among others articles on the Operation 11.11.11 2012, aimed also at collecting funds to be directed to SEXAGON (Farmers Union of the Niger Office in Mali), chronic hunger among women in poor countries, and the next Doha Climate Change Conference
    SOS Faim is a development NGO striving against hunger and rural poverty, based in Belgium and Luxembourg. It was established in 1964 following an appeal from FAO (The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations).


    Source: SOS Faim


    Link Read SOS Faim newsletter
    Link Find out more about SOS Faim


  15. 5th edition of the PAERIP IN-FOCUS Newsletter
    2012-11-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : ACP-EU Trade, New Technologies

    The PAERIP (Promoting African European Research Infrastructure Partnerships) consortium has issued the latest newsletter PAERIP IN-FOCUS in the domain of the EU-African cooperation on Research Infrastructures.
    PAERIP is a project funded under the EU's FP7 Capacities Programme (INFRA-2010-3.2) with the aim of promoting and strengthening research infrastructure partnerships between Europe and Africa. With the South African Departement of Science and Technology (DST) as the Project Coordinator, other consortium members include: ISC Intelligence in Science (Belgium), the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (Egypt), the Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Technology (Kenya), the National Documentation Centre (Greece), Sigma Orionis (France), TechnoScene (Pty) Ltd (South Africa), The Association of Commonwealth Universities (UK).
    The newsletter includes articles on stakeholder workshop held in London on 17th October, on African-European partnerships in Research Infrastructure (as discussed during the During the PAERIP workshop in London), an analysis on the socio - economic impact of African-EU RI cooperation, and a selection of future events.  

     

    Source: PAERIP


    Link Read the newsletter
    Link Find out more about PAERIP


  16. EU fogs post-2012 climate aid pledges
    2012-11-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    Europe will not promise any specific new monies for fast-dwindling climate aid to the developing world, according to draft conclusions of the economic minister’s council (Ecofin) on 13 November.
    The draft economic minister’s council conclusions say only that the EU will “continue to provide climate finance support after 2012”, without providing details of any 2013-2019 package.
    The EU has stumped up €7.2 billion of climate finance in the 2010-2012 period under a Fast Start Finance (FSF) deal, due to run out at the end of this year.The FSF was intended to kickstart a global Green Climate Fund that will eventually generate $100 billion (€78.9 billion) a year in climate aid, but has been beset by squabbles over seats, sources of funding, methods of payment, and beneficiaries.
    If a gap did appear in funding, “that would be disastrous for us, very negative” said Evans Davie Njewa, a climate negotiator for Malawi and the 48 least developed countries (LDCs).
    Of the EU’s €7.2 billion funding to date, the draft conclusions says that 40.5% of the total has been spent on mitigation measures, 30.1% on adaptation and 13% on support action to reduce deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries. Many developing countries though question the allocation of EU FSF funds, 60% of which have been delivered without consulting the affected countries, according to Oxfam. Njewa said that most revenue had so far gone to fund mitigation projects favoured by the wealthy North, rather than adaptation measures, favoured by the LDCs themselves.“We don’t even have a clear registry where the support has been recorded,” he complained. “We’re told that the money has been going to straight to communities but I don’t know how much because we don’t get official reports,” he said.

     

    Source: Euractiv


    Link Read more
    Link EU finance ministers must step up climate cash flows to poor countries
    Link Copenhagen Accord


  17. EU finance ministers must step up climate cash flows to poor countries
    2012-11-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment

    EU finance ministers must be prepared to give concrete assurances that climate finance will not fall off a cliff in December, but will continue to be provided to support climate action in developing countries, argue the member of the European Parliament for the Green Group, Satu Hassi, and the director of Climate Action Network Europe in Brussels, Wendel Trio.
    EU finance ministers discussed on 13 November the details for how to keep the EU’s commitment to providing climate finance to developing countries, in preparation for the next UN climate summit starting in Doha in a few weeks.
    A pathway forward must be found soon, as the “Fast-Start Finance” (FSF) period, established at the UN conference in Copenhagen for the period 2010 to 2012, runs out at the end of this year.
    EU finance ministers must be prepared to give concrete assurances that climate finance will not fall off a cliff in December, but will continue to be provided to support climate action in developing countries.Right now there is no roadmap for how the EU plans to meet its share of the $100 billion annually by 2020 already promised to developing countries, nor is there any money in the UN’s Green Climate Fund. A lack of clarity on finance beyond 2012 could spell disaster for vulnerable countries already struggling to cope with the effects of a changing climate.
    If not backed up by a solid European climate finance package beyond 2012, the EU may find it hard to negotiate with its new allies in Doha.

     

    Source: Euractiv


    Link Read more
    Link  Climate summit: EU and world must raise ambition
    Link UN climate summit in Doha


  18. Support program for African women researchers renewed
    2012-11-14
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Gender and development

    African Women in Agricultural Research and Development (AWARD), a program that helps women in Sub-Saharan countries to develop leadership and scientific skills, was renewed for five more years. A second grant was announced on 18 October, comprising US$14 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and US$5 million from the US Agency for International Development (USAID).
    According to AWARD's spokesperson, Karen Homer, the program sparks more effective innovations in agriculture. "We believe that effective solutions for African agriculture will come through empowered women scientists," she said.
    The majority of those who produce, process and market Africa's food are women, but only one in four agricultural researchers is female, according to a 2008 benchmarking study conducted by AWARD.
    Homer noted that even fewer women, one in seven, hold leadership positions in African agricultural research institutions. Currently there are few leadership positions available in agriculture and development, and of those that do exist, most are held by men.
    Every AWARD fellow attends courses on leadership and management, science skills and proposal writing. They are also twinned with senior scientists as mentors.

     

    Source: SciDev Net


    Link Read more
    Link Fellowships for African women scientists a big hit
    Link The African Women in Agricultural Research and Development


  19. EU to support Niger establish food security and resilience to crisis
    2012-11-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Humanitarian Aid, Rural development

    European Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, Kristalina Georgieva, spoke at the Niger National Economic and Social Development Plan (PDES) Round Table Conference held today in Paris, France, highlighting EU’s intention to help Niger establish food security and resilience to crises.
    In this context Commissioner Georgieva reassured that Niger “is and will remain one of our most important partner countries in West Africa”.  She emphasized the contribution of the EU of more than € 530 million to Niger within the framework of the 10th European Development Fund (covering 2008-2013). Plus, additional funds have been provided in order to respond to the effects of the Libyan and Mali conflicts, the 2012 food crisis and the recent flooding.
    Furthermore, in the context of the "Agenda for Change" for the 11th EDF National Indicative Programmes, the European Commission plans to limit the number of sectors the EU is active in, to concentrate its support in areas where a real impact can be made and to differentiate between partner countries with regard to their actual needs. Also, EU will continue to support Niger for the establishment of food security and resilience for the most vulnerable households.
    Commissioner Georgieva also welcomed Niger’s Economic and Social Development Plan for 2012-2015, aiming to implement a development strategy based on governance of democratic and credible institutions, respect for human rights, transparency and above all, on food security. She has also pointed the importance of strengthening additional sectors like health or access to drinking water.

     

    Source: New Europe


    Link Read more
    Link Speech of Kristalina Georgieva
    Link Agenda for Change


  20. Ascending Africa – Opportunities and Challenges Summit in Brussels
    2012-11-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Aid effectiveness, Health and Development, Humanitarian Aid

    Africa is rising. Long-standing slow growth is giving way to rapid economic expansion, with many African economies expanding at 5% a year or more. Foreign Direct Investment is surging too, along with remittances from the African diaspora. These were some of the conclusions of the Development Policy Forum annual policy summit,  Ascending Africa – Opportunities and Challenges, which took place in Brussels on November 13.
    In his opening speech, Andris Piebalgs, EU Commissioner for Development, said: “We stand on the brink of truly historic opportunity to bring lasting growth and prosperity for the poor in Africa”.
    Substantial challenges remain, however. Africa’s population is expected to double to 2 billion over the coming four decades. Governments must create the conditions for growth in jobs and opportunities for a burgeoning workforce. And political leaders must also deliver sweeping reform on governance, from the administration of natural resource extraction to promoting democracy. Piebalgs underlined that the EU, for its part, will help the development for economic growth within Africa with its Agenda for Change.
    The summit gathered  major development players– including the European Parliament, the African Union and the ACP states.

     

    Source: friends of europe


    Link Ascending Africa - opportunities and challenges
    Link speech of Andris Piebalgs, EU Commissioner for Development
    Link Agenda for Change of the EU


  21. EU leaders urged to 'stand up and fight' for overseas aid
    2012-11-13
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Aid effectiveness, Humanitarian Aid

    A new report says the EU's proposed post-2014 budget for development aid to the world's poorest would "more than pay for itself" by 2020.
    It claims that the €51bn earmarked through the EU's development cooperation instrument (DCI) and the European development fund (EDF) for 2014-2020 would be "completely recouped" and would bring a net gain in EU gross domestic product (GDP) of €11.5bn, while sub-Saharan Africa would see a GDP boost of 2.5 per cent. The report was carried out on behalf of anti-poverty group ONE and published on Monday.
    The appeal is timed to coincide with a summit of EU leaders and heads of state on 22/23 November where the long-term EU budget will top the agenda. The commission and parliament want a five per cent increase in the post-2014 budget, but there are mounting fears that the budget may be frozen or even cut. If that happens, some believe that the overseas aid budget could suffer.

    Such concerns were underlined last week when the Cyprus EU presidency published figures suggesting average cuts to so-called 'external spending instruments' of at least 7.3 per cent.
    This comes despite a recent survey saying that 85 per cent of EU citizens believe that Europe should continue helping developing countries despite the economic crisis.
    More than 110,000 people have also signed a petition calling on EU leaders to protect aid spending.
    Several countries have pledged to support EU development aid spending in recent weeks, including France, Denmark and the UK.
    Several countries, including Denmark, Ireland and the UK have also protected development aid from national budget cuts
     
    Source: The Parliament


    Link Read more
    Link Find out more about group ONE
    Link Cuts in the EU long term budget for 2014-2020


  22. AUC and CTA sign MoU to strengthen agricultural policies in Africa
    2012-11-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Health and Development, Food Policy

    The African Union Commission (AUC) and the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to strengthen  agricultural policies in Africa.
    The MoU was signed by the AUC’s Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture (DREA) Commissioner, Mrs. Rhoda Peace Tumusiime, on behalf of the AUC and Dr. Michael Hailu, CTA Director.
    Among other collaborative efforts, the MoU focuses on strengthening the cooperation between the two institutions to enhance agricultural policies in Africa for increased productivity, intra-regional trade in agricultural products, promote sustainable natural resource management and to accelerate the implementation of CAADP at national, regional and continental levels.
    During the signing ceremony, Mrs. Tumusiime welcomed the partnership with CTA as a timely move; as global attention was now focused on Africa’s resolve to shoulder its responsibilities of eradicating hunger and poverty. “This is a partnership that is being formally recognised on the heels of the commemoration of the African Day for Food and Nutrition Security Day, in which the issue of access to safe and nutritious food to all is a significant consideration. It is, therefore, essential that this partnership aims at supporting in concrete terms, the drive towards a hunger-free Africa,’’ she said.

     

    Source: African Union Commission


    Link Read more
    Link CTA Brussels Briefing on pastoralism in ACP countries
    Link Brussels Development Briefings


  23. The European Food agency wants to strengthen EU risk assessment
    2012-11-12
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Food Security

    The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has called for a further strengthening of the EU's risk assessment capacity at a high-level scientific conference which took place in Parma on 7-8 November.
    The two-day conference, "'Challenging boundaries in risk assessment – sharing experiences'", which marked the agency's 10th anniversary, brought together global specialists from a wide range of scientific disciplines. The scientists examined the frontiers of risk assessment and considered future key issues and opportunities. “EFSA functions thanks to the EU risk assessment community,” Hubert Deluyker, EFSA's director of Science Strategy and Coordination, said in a speech.
    The conference came amid renewed controversy surrounding the approval of genetically modified crops in Europe after a French biologist from the University of Caen published a study that questioned the safety of Monsanto's GM maize.

     

    Source: Euractiv


    Link Read more
    Link The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA)
    Link French study re-launches GMO controversy



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Ms Isolina BOTO
Head
CTA Brussels Office
39 rue Montoyer
1000 Brussels - Belgium
Tel: +32 (0) 2 513 74 36 (direct); Fax +32 (0) 2 511 38 68
E-mail: boto@cta.int
Website: http://www.cta.int/
Brussels weblog: http://brussels.cta.int/
Brussels Briefings: http://brusselsbriefings.net/

Editor: Cristina Dobos (dobos@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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