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CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter
Subject: CTA - Brussels Office Newsletter
Send date: 2013-07-12 15:42:12
Issue #: 183
Bulletin CTA


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

Date : [12/07/2013]
CTA Brussels Newsletter


Main events in the week

  1. Main Events for the Week 15/07/2013 – 21/07/2013
  2. Video Guest: Kalilou Sylla, ROPPA
  3. Brussels Briefing: Major fish farming potential in ACP largely untapped
  4. European Parliament: 5,5% cap on traditional biofuel
  5. France - must ensure that poor countries get the aid they need
  6. MEPs to vote on biofuels as study points to hunger, deforestation
  7. €27m for renewable energy policy in Nigeria
  8. Donors, recipients look at effectiveness of ‘aid for trade’
  9. OECD: Increase in food prices, an opportunity for developing countries
  10. Africa and EU: Rising Level of Antibiotic-Resistant Salmonella
  11. EU: deal on multi-billion euro budget for 2014-2020
  12. Need for a funding mechanism for overseas islands
  13. EU trade defence measures contradict climate policy
  14. EPAs: Ghana will engage main stakeholders in policy dialogue
  15. Decent Work and Africa-EU Trade Relations
  16. UK MPs: respect land tenure systems in developing countries
  17. The post-2015 development agenda
  18. EU to scale down aid in Namibia
  19. The Lithuanian EU Presidency - ‘A fresh Baltic breeze’
  20. Croatian fishermen: Little to celebrate under EU policy
  21. Croatia joins the European Union

  1. Main Events for the Week 15/07/2013 – 21/07/2013

    Council of the EU:
    15th July: Agriculture and Fisheries Council

    ACP Group:
    15th – 19th July: Regional meeting ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly
    15th July: Meeting of the Ad Hoc Group on Deepening Intra-ACP Cooperation
    Special meeting of the Committee of Ambassadors ACP

    You can also follow us on our Facebook page CTABrussels and our Twitter account CTABrussels to receive up-to-date information on EU-ACP events.


  2. Video Guest: Kalilou Sylla, ROPPA
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Food Security, Food Policy, Agriculture

    Resilience has three key elements: anticipation of shocks, adaptation, and integration - this is the view of the General Secretary of the Network of farmers’ and producers organization in West Africa (ROPPA), Kalilou Sylle, as presented in an interview with CTA Brussels on 13th June 2013.
    The General Secretary of ROPPA was present in Brussels on 13th June on the occasion of the roundtable conference on "Sustainable Agriculture as a means to increase resilience: the vision of West African farmers and producers", organized by the European Commission, the Technical Centre for Agriculture (CTA), and SOS Faim.
    At this event, the representatives of the farmers' organizations presented several initiatives and experiences in sustainable intensification of production in Senegal, Niger and Burkina Faso, aspects of rice marketing in Benin and Gambia, along with examples of financing in Togo and Mali.
    Read more about it: bit.ly/12byz3W

    Link Watch the Video
    Link More on the conferences on Sustainable intensification

  3. Brussels Briefing: Major fish farming potential in ACP largely untapped
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Regional Fisheries

    While the global demand for fish is climbing faster than current resources can meet, fish farming or aquaculture remains a largely underdeveloped industry in African, Caribbean and Pacific regions – this was one of the main conclusions of the experts speaking at the 32nd Brussels Briefing on "Fish-farming", which took place on 3rd of July at the ACP Secretariat in Brussels.
    The speakers noted almost unanimously  the “significant potential” of the sector across ACP regions, if the right policies were in place. 

    Senior fisheries advisor at the New partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), Sloans Chimatiro said that while the tonnage of aquaculture production in Africa pales in comparison to Asia, the rate of expansion is “spectacular”, with an 80-90% growth within the last five years.
    But even with this increase, fish supply – both captured and farmed – will not be able to fulfil demand in Sub-Saharan Africa by 2015: “Africa might be able to import fish from other parts of the world, but I think there is potential is to increase the amount of fish produced locally could lie in the aquaculture subsector,” Chimatiro disclosed.
    In this context, Chimatiro considers that market-led approaches could be the best solution for boosting aquaculture growth in Africa (for example, the commercially driven model in Nigeria, which also offers opportunities to rural youth).
    He also mentioned good governance and political will as key aspects for the development of the industry. In fact, the African Union Heads of States - at the Food Security Summit in Abuja, Nigeria in December - named fisheries and aquaculture as strategic commodities alongside rice, maize and other strategic food products.

    Executive Director of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM), Milton Haughton also pointed to the high per capita fish consumption in the Caribbean – 77kg each year in Antigua, and more than 30kg each in the Bahamas, Barbados, Grenada and St. Kitts. He revealed though that most supply are imported, due to the high input cost of fish farming. Another factor he mentioned for the low level of supply is a general decline of the industry since the mid-2000s, affected in parts by impacts of the global economic crisis and climate change. However, “despite the recent decline in aquaculture production, it has actually provided an opportunity to have a new look at the aquaculture industry in the region and learn from the lessons and experiences,” stated Haughton.
    For the Caribbean, a regional CARICOM development strategy for 2013-2020 includes plans to develop the sector by adopting an ecosystem approach to aquaculture, creating a regional working group, as well as enabling policy and legal frameworks. Voluntary guidelines and best management practices and standards are also expected.


    Lastly, the Pacific region was described as a strong domestic market base, which is buoyed by vast territorial waters - similar in size to the African continent.  Yet, the island landmasses are small and scattered, which hinders a solid development of the sector.
    Aquaculture specialist from the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), Tim Pickering stressed that for Pacific micro-economies, even small developments in aquaculture can have an impact. While regional earnings top only US $200 – 250 million per year (mainly from blacklip pearl and shrimp), the socio-economic benefits for small communities are vital. For instance, in Papua New Guinea, 10,000 – 20,000 farmers raise tilapia and carp inland where fish is scarce. Sea weed farming is also ongoing in outlying small islands where there are few other economic opportunities. “It is low in value, but a little bit of cash in empty pockets makes a big difference,” Pickering said.
    He added that the Pacific region can take lessons from aquaculture practices in Africa, especially in involving the private sector.

    The briefings session also cited possible cooperation amongst fish farming groups in Africa, Caribbean and the Pacific. The EU-funded ACP Fish II programme – which provides assistance to fisheries development in ACP countries – was also mentioned in this context.

    This event marked the 32nd edition of the Brussels Development Briefings – a regular event organized in Brussels by the Technical Centre for Agriculture (CTA) – in collaboration with the European Commission, the ACP Group, and other partners – on key issues and challenges for rural development in the context of EU/ACP cooperation.
    For the full recording of the session, programme, speakers'bio data, and an in-depth research on the topic visit: http://brusselsbriefings.net

    Source: ACP Secretariat

    Link Read more
    Link More on the Brussels Briefing on "Fish-farming"
    Link Previous Brussels Briefings

  4. European Parliament: 5,5% cap on traditional biofuel
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment, Archive, Energy

    Draft legal measures to cap traditional biofuel production and accelerate the switchover to a new generation of products from other sources, such as seaweed and or certain types of waste, were approved by the European Parliament Environment Committee on Thursday, 11th of July. These measures aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions due to the growing use of farmland to produce biofuel crops.
    Thus, according to the vote, the share of first-generation biofuels, produced from food and energy crops, must not exceed 5.5% of total energy consumption for transport purposes by 2020 (the European Commission had proposed a 5% cap).
    Moreover, advanced biofuels produced from other sources, such as seaweed or certain types of waste, must account for no less than 2% of consumption by 2020, say MEPs. However, this share should not be achieved at the cost of depriving other industries of raw materials, destabilising EU waste policy, overexploiting forests or reducing biodiversity, they add.
    These integrate in the policy framework which stipulates that renewable energy sources account for at least 10% of transport fuel use by 2020.
    A new study released few days before the vote shows that using farm land to produce biofuel crops reduces the area available for food crops. This adds to pressure to free up more land, e.g. through deforestation, to grow more food - a process known as indirect land use change (ILUC). But deforestation in itself increases greenhouse gas emissions, which could cancel out part of the beneficial effects of using biofuels.
    The European Parliament says to have had called as long ago as 2008 for the ILUC factor to be taken into account in EU biofuel policy.
    These legislative amendments will be put to a plenary vote in Strasbourg in September.

    Source: European Parliament

    Link Read more
    Link MEPs to vote on biofuels as study points to hunger, deforestation

  5. France - must ensure that poor countries get the aid they need
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Archive, Development Policy, Aid effectiveness

    On 5th of July, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released new data according to which, in 2012, France’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) was USD 12.1 billion (or 0.46% of French Gross National Income - GNI), under the 0.7% ODA/GNI ratio, to which it has committed together with other rich countries under the Millennium Development Goals.
    This sum makes France the 4th largest member of the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee in terms of the volume of aid.

    OECD’s review of French aid praises the country’s overall development strategy and its engagement at the global level to promote it, including innovative financing. According to the OECD, France focuses in particular on health, environment and climate change, mobilises private investments and promotes greater transparency in international financial transactions.

    The review recommends, however, that France do more to support civil society organisations and gender equality, and to build stronger capacity for developing countries to manage their own futures. France could also do more to monitor the results of its development efforts, the review reads.
    Another recommendation is that, as many other actors and numerous budget lines are involved in the aid programme, France reduce its transaction costs by rationalising the institutional system.
    More, it appears that only 0,9% of French ODA is devoted to humanitarian aid, a much lower sum than most other donors.
    Another factor of possible concern is that in the last period France has shifted towards providing fewer grants, and more loans. This last ones usually support the productive sectors and action to counter climate change in middle income countries.

    According to the European Commission, in 2012, out of the 27 EU countries, only Denmark, Luxembourg, Sweden, and the Netherlands had already met the 0.7% GNI target.

    Source: OECD

    Link Read more
    Link EU still committed to achieve development aid target
    Link The 0.7% target: An in-depth look

  6. MEPs to vote on biofuels as study points to hunger, deforestation
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment, Energy

    A new study released by Friends of the Earth, and drafted by Tim Searchinger, a Princeton University research scholar and biofuels expert, shows that the existing modelling data used by the European Union to establish the effects of "indirect land use change (ILUC)" caused by growing fuel crops is faulted.
    In practice, he shows that when agricultural land that had been used to grow food is given over to growing biofuels, someone somewhere will go hungry - unless previously uncultivated land is taken to grow the displaced food, or yields from existing crops increase commensurately.
    But “there is extremely little evidence that you will get additional yield gains,” Searchinger said. Searchinger’s reading of one key report produced for the EU by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) found that of every 100 calories from wheat or maize diverted to food tanks by bioethanol production, 25 calories were not replaced.  
    “If you step back, take the broader view and see that people are going to have to produce 60% more food by 2050 [to feed a growing world population] that we’re not going to be able to feed entirely from yield gain, biofuels will just compound that problem,” the author pointed out.

    This study comes on the heels of a vote by the European Parliament’s (EP) environment committee on a proposal to curb EU support for biofuels, expected for 11th of July. In the committee, there are intentions to augment a proposed 5% cap on ‘first generation’ biofuels’ share of the 2020 transport mix.
    After the vote, this proposal will go to a plenary session on 10 September, before final negotiations with member states begin.
    Previously, projections that feedstock-based biofuels would indirectly cause net greenhouse gas emissions had been confirmed by preliminary results from two studies of past land use change, co-authored by the EU's Joint Research Centre (JRC), the Netherlands Environment Assessment Agency (PBL) and Koen Overmars, an independent Dutch consultancy.

    Source: EurActiv

    Link Read more
    Link Summary of the Report
    Link Studies shore up proof of indirect biofuels emissions

  7. €27m for renewable energy policy in Nigeria

    A grant of €27 million will be invested into enabling framework conditions for renewable energy and energy efficiency in Nigeria, as part of a programme “Energising Access to Sustainable Energy” (EASE), the European Commission announced on 4th of July.
    The programme will focus on improving the use of renewable energies by Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and households. It is also planned for the programme to address the massive deforestation and cutting of trees for fuel wood - the main energy source for the majority of the population -  by planting more trees.
    The new programme will be run in partnership with the World Bank (which will contribute with over €4,6 million) and the GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit), with a contribution of €9 million.
    This sum is allocated from the total of €697 million distributed to Nigeria through the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) which runs from 2007-2013. From this total sum, the chapter “Trade, regional integration and energy security” had allocated for the whole period €47 million.
    At the moment, 80 per cent of the population in rural Nigeria have no access to electricity.

    Source: European Commission

    Link Read more
    Link Pacific Energy Summit : $635m for energy efficiency

  8. Donors, recipients look at effectiveness of ‘aid for trade’

    It is unclear whether ‘aid for trade’ (AfT) projects and programmes indeed impact on poverty, a recent study shows. It comes on the heels of a fourth Global Review of Aid for Trade – an event organized by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to offer an opportunity to donors and to developing countries to look how Aft is helping people to trade - in Geneva on 8 July.
    The report - commissioned by Traidcraft, a UK-based NGO fighting poverty through trade, and CAFOD, the official overseas development and relief agency of the Catholic Church in England and Wales - says that poverty reduction is only measured at macro-level and in the long-term perspective. In contrast, the impact of concrete projects on poor and excluded groups is typically not assessed.
    The study is also critical of the EU decision making process, with too many players involved. It notes that the EU process of evaluation of projects, which is highly centralised, leaves little room for reflection on local circumstances and for the flexibility in project design.
    However, according to the same research, the share of AfT of overall Official Development Assistance (ODA) did globally increased from 26% in 2006-2007 to 35% in 2010. AfT to sub-Saharan Africa has increased the most, compared to other regions, by almost 40%.
    In the same time, this year's joint report ‘‘Aid for Trade at a Glance: Connecting to Value Chains’ - from the WTO and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, or OECD – shows that for every euro invested in Aid for trade produces between 8 and 20 euros in additional exports from developing countries, the EU commissioner for development aid, Andris Piebalgs – also present at the 8th July event in Geneve – said.

    The Aid for trade (AfT) initiative, launched at the WTO Ministerial Conference in 2005, is assistance to support developing countries' efforts to expand their trade as a tool to help growth and reduce poverty. A total of $200 billion (€155 billion) have been mobilised since the inception of AfT in 2005, it is estimated.

    Within the AfT initiative, in 2011, the share of EU and its member country contribution in the global Trade Facilitation accounted for 59% of the total effort.

    Source: EurActiv

    Link Read more
    Link More on 'Aid for Trade'
    Link Keynote address by the ACP Secretary General at the event

  9. OECD: Increase in food prices, an opportunity for developing countries

    The increase of global food prices can be an opportunity for developing countries; this could push them to upgrade their strategies for fighting food insecurity, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) emphasised in a report published in Brussels on June 19th. Moreover, according to the OECD, these countries could grow if the subventions for agricultural production were substituted by social transfers and investment.
    As indicated in the report, the augmentation of food prices could impose upon the small scale farmers in developing countries to ground more viable businesses. Moreover, neither the decrease of prices usually advantages the small scale farmers, because they earn less in the moment of sale.
    In any case, the vulnerability of food crises will stay alarmingly high if the income of the population in developing countries does not boost, the organisation believes. This is why, the small scale producers should orientate towards another fields of activity rather than agriculture, as for example the field of services or manufacturing.

    More, it is suggested that a reciprocal liberalization of agricultural markets between the developing and developed countries is needed in order for real benefices to be drawn from international trade.

    Source: EuraActiv.fr

    Link En savoir plus [EN]

  10. Africa and EU: Rising Level of Antibiotic-Resistant Salmonella

    Strains of one increasingly antibiotic-resistant Salmonella serotype have seen a “rapid worldwide spread,” according to a study published by researchers at the Institut Pasteur in Paris and Morocco. The resistance is believed to be caused by “the massive overuse” of antibiotics in African poultry farming.
    Antibiotic-resistant Salmonella Kentucky, first isolated in 2002, has now “spread at an astonishing rate throughout Africa and the Middle East in the space of only a few years,” the study’s authors claim. Moreover, “a number of strains recently acquired in the Mediterranean Basin are showing a range of resistance towards all antibiotic classes used to treat severe cases of salmonellosis,” the study’s summary read.
    The main vehicle of transmission for antibiotic-resistant Salmonella Kentucky from African and Middle Eastern countries appears to be chickens and turkeys. The bacterium has already been found in farmed-raised turkeys in Europe.

    Source: foodsafetynews.com

    Link Read more

  11. EU: deal on multi-billion euro budget for 2014-2020

    The European Union will have a total budget of €960 billion for the next seven years (the period 2014-2020); the members of the European Parliament (MEPs) agreed on this figure at the end of June 2013, approving the deal struck by the representatives of EU member states and the European Parliament on June 19th.

    The deal left unchanged the overall spending limits for 2014-2020 agreed by EU leaders in February. They included the first ever real-terms decrease in long-term spending, while agriculture and regional development funding will continue to enjoy the largest budgets.

    But negotiators did agree that a limited amount of unspent funds could be moved from one year's budget to the next, instead of being returned to national coffers as at present.
    The deal also includes a binding revision clause in 2016, in parallel with a review of the EU budget’s so-called “own resources”, which refers to the EU’s ability to raise its own taxes to win additional sources of revenue.

    The budget comprises also a 31.589 billion Euro for the next (11th) European Development Fund (EDF) – the traditional EU funding to the African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) states.
    In comparison, in the previous period (2008-2013), the EDF had a budget of €22,7 bn. Yet, the yearly amounts paid out in the next period (2014-2020) are to be similar to the ones during 2008-20013, given that its total budget accounts for one extra year.

    The final legally binding vote on the budget in Parliament will only take place when the €11.2 billion needed to balance the 2013 budget is confirmed by the Council. That is expected to happen in September or October 2013.

    Source: EurActiv


    Link Read more
    Link MEPs approve long-term budget compromise
    Link A larger than expected European Development Fund

  12. Need for a funding mechanism for overseas islands
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Environment, Climate change

    There is a need for a stronger recognition of Europe’s overseas entities challenges in EU policies, as well as for the setting up of targeted funding mechanism(s) to support overseas islands, an event hosted by the European Parliament Intergroup on Climate Change, Biodiversity and Sustainable Development on June 10th heard.
    The islands across the globe have a double statute as centres of eco-inovation, but also as states requiring much support to deal with the numerous pressures on their marine and coastal environments, key note speaker Ronny Jumeau – Chair of the Global Island Partnership Steering Committee and ambassador of the Seychelles to the UN – highlighted on the occasion.
    Moreover, both the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the Global Island Partnership emphasized the key sustainable development challenges faced by Europe’s overseas entities, as well the potential of islands across the globe to help achieve both EU and international environmental targets.

    The call for improved support for Europe overseas comes just as the European Commission has launched its third and final call for tender for the BEST preparatory action to promote the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services in EU outermost regions and overseas countries and territories. The contract views the setting up of a platform that shall facilitate information-sharing on funding availability from different sources (European Commission but also from international financial institutions to NGOs to businesses) for projects aimed at the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services in EU outermost regions and overseas countries and territories.

    Source: International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)

    Link Read more
    Link Report of the meeting on Islands' challenges

  13. EU trade defence measures contradict climate policy

    There is a contradiction between the European Union’s (EU) Trade Defence Instruments (TDI) policy and its climate policy, a new report from the Swedish National Board of Trade – the Swedish governmental agency responsible for issues relating to foreign trade and trade policy – indicates.

    This appears to be a consequence of a new trend for the EU’s TDI policy to target renewable energy sources, the report, entitled “Targeting the Environment”, shows.

    The research has found that in recent years, the TDIs have increasingly been directed towards renewable energy sources, in particular biofuels (biodiesel and bioethanol) and solar panels. The TDI investigations on renewable energy sources affect import values of about EUR 14 billion, representing almost 75% of the import value all of the TDI measures currently in force.

    There are three kinds of TDIs: (1) anti-dumping measures, targeting dumped imports; (2) anti-subsidy measures, targeting subsidized imports; and (3) safeguards, targeting sudden increases in imports. Anti-dumping measures and anti-subsidy measures are the most frequently used TDI measures in the EU.
    An example of such measures is the 2009 anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures which were imposed on imports of biodiesel from the US. In 2011, the measures were extended to encompass imports of biodiesel from Canada, in order to avoid alleged circumvention.
    The measures may only be imposed if it is not against the interests of the EU as a whole to raise the tariffs, i.e. the ‘Union interest test’.
    Environmental concerns are not currently considered in the evaluation of interests that may be harmed by the imposition of TDI measures.

    The problem is that the increase in TDIs towards renewable energy could lead to a consequent escalation in the price of imported renewable energy sources, affecting the availability of affordable renewable energy in the EU market to the detriment of the consumers and the environment, the report says. This would contradict EU’s climate policy that recognizes the need to empower the consumers and to increase competition in the EU’s renewable energy market, in order to raise the share of renewable energy sources to 20% by 2020.

    From this perspective, it would be recommended that the EU’s trade policy, in particular the EU’s TDI policy, take the EU’s climate policy into account, the research shows. Environmental effects should be considered as part of the ‘Union interest test’ before imposing TDI measures, as for the environmental benefits it does not matter where the renewable energy is produced, the report concludes.

    Source: Swedish National Board of Trade

    Link Read more
    Link More on trade defence
    Link Cases of trade defence against EU

  14. EPAs: Ghana will engage main stakeholders in policy dialogue

    The government of Ghana announced a round of consultations with the main relevant stakeholders before signing the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union.
    The EPAs  foresee the establishment of a free trade area between EU and ACP countries. The consultations started in 2003. Recently, the European Union has set October 2014 as deadline to conclude the EPAs negotiations. At the moment Ghanaian products, except rice and sugar, have taxes and quota free access to European markets thanks to the Interim Economic Partnership Agreement (IEPA) signed in 2007. The IEPAs  grant European Union the faculty of exporting to Ghana 80% of its products duty and quota free.
    Trade Minister of Ghana, Haruna Iddrissu expressed the intentions of engaging relevant actors before  the  signing of any agreement the main stakeholders will be consulted.   

    Source: www.bilaterals.org

    Link Read more
    Link More on EPAs

  15. Decent Work and Africa-EU Trade Relations

    The implementation of Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) between the European Union and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries might have harmful consequences for the poorer producers and workers in ACP agricultural and manufacturing sectors – this is the conclusion of a recent research paper conducted by Mark Langan, professor of International Relations at Leeds Metropolitan University.
    The paper – entitled "The Decent Work Agenda and ACP-EU Relations" - argues that there is disjuncture between the norms of the European Commission as espoused under the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO),Decent Work Agenda” and the tangible implications of European interventions in ACP economies.
    In particular, there are concerns that the European Commission’s pursuit of trade liberalisation in ACP states under EPAs does much to jeopardise jobs in import-competing sectors such as textiles and poultry. Meanwhile, forms of employment encouraged within export-oriented sectors such as cut-flower production often revolve around a business model predicated on the exploitation of cheap labour.

    Aligning with the discourse of ILO, the European Commission had committed to implementation of the decent work agenda in the world by ensuring that ‘globalisation works for the poor’ and that economic growth is translated into decent jobs and poverty reduction. The ILO’s “Decent Work Agenda” has four interrelated objectives:
    1. Increase employment in productive sectors in the global South
    2. Promote respect of core labour standards in these sectors
    3. Facilitate social dialogue e.g. in terms of trade union recognition
    4. Provide social protection e.g. in relation to pensions and sick pay

    The quoted paper entitled is freely available to download from the Social Sciences Research Network (SSRN) database: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2276947

    Source: SSRN

    Link Download the paper
    Link More about the "Decent work agenda"
    Link More about the author

  16. UK MPs: respect land tenure systems in developing countries
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Rural development, Food Security, Environment, Agriculture

    United Kingdom ‘s Members of the Parliament (MPs) advocate for more transparency of UK domiciliated companies on land acquisitions in developing countries. MPs stressed the need to respect land tenure rights and called for an enforcement of the UN voluntary guidelines on the responsible governance of  tenure which UK supports.
    The committee for International Development of the United Kingdom's Parliament recently published a report on Global food security. The report acknowledged the role of smallholders in contributing to food security and indicated the access to natural resources as a main threat to food production. The report recommended the Department for International Development (DfiD)  to scale up successful projects such as the creation of land registers in Rwanda. Mounting worries over the detrimental impact of biofuels cultivation and the need to support smallholder farmers through extension services and an enabling policy environment was also stressed.

    Source: The Guardian

    Link Read more
    Link Read the report

  17. The post-2015 development agenda
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Development Policy, Aid effectiveness

    The EU Development Commissioner, Andris Pielbags, met with journalists on June 4 to discuss over the UN high-level panel on the post- 2015 development agenda report.
    The report, has been prepared by a high-level panel of 27 experts, co-chaired by the President of Indonesia, the UK Prime Minister and the President of Liberia.
    The new development framework  is centered around 12 broad indicators and 50 objective targets which are articulated in four goals areas: eradicating extreme poverty; environmental sustainability; equity, human and political rights; and partnership.
    Pielbags said that if the framework is well accepted it could become a binding agreement for the countries for the post- 2015 agenda.
    The panel developed a framework of indicators and objectives focused on the concept of sustainability. The Commissioner stressed how the proposed framework  should be universally applied to developed and developing countries, overcoming  the dualism between north-south.  He outlined how consultation process with developing countries strongly underlined the importance of employment creation especially for young people.

    Source: EurActiv

    Link Read more
    Link Read the report

  18. EU to scale down aid in Namibia
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Development Policy

    Namibia will be one of the countries affected by the EU’s decision of scaling down the funds to be received by some nations under the €31 billion 11th European Development Fund for African, Caribbean and Pacific countries (approved by the EU for the next seven years), due to the new focus on fragile states, Devex informs.
    This new focus corresponds to the direction underlined in the bloc’s so-called Agenda for Change.
    Even if it has not been confirmed which and how many countries will benefit of smaller amounts,  Devex announced last month that in the next seven years Namibia will be getting less funds than the €125 million it received under the previous EDF (2007-2013). This is to be seen as a positive sign that the country is doing well in its development endeavours, an EU official is reported to have said.
    Namibia is now classified by the EU as a middle-income country like its neighbour South Africa.
    Namibian Prime Minister Hage Geingob said that the aid shortfall will be a challenge, but the country will learn to less dependent on foreign assistance even if calling Namibia a high-income country — as some have suggested — is a “wrong calculation”.

    Source: www.devex.com

    Link Read more
    Link ACP, EU agree on development fund
    Link A larger than expected European Development Fund

  19. The Lithuanian EU Presidency - ‘A fresh Baltic breeze’

    Lithuania, a country of 3.2 million which joined the EU in 2004, assumes its first presidency of the Council of the European Union on 1 July. Lithuania considers itself one of the most successful countries to overcome the economic and financial crisis and to return to sustained recovery and growth. It is the first Baltic country to take the EU stint.
    The Lithuanian Presidency is also the first of an European Union with 28 member states, as Croatia joins the EU on 1 July.
    Although it has not yet become a eurozone member, Lithuania has been more successful economically than many other EU countries during the eurozone crisis. “Lithuania is a fresh breeze, an innovative and vital voice in the EU family,” the country’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevičius recently stated.
    Lithuania assumes its presidency in the final period of the mandate of the European Commission and the European Parliament.The next Greek Presidency will have to prepare for European elections, to be held between 22 and 25 May 2014.
    The small administration of the country will have to deal with an unusually heavy agenda that will also include the “unfinished business” left over from previous presidencies.
    Lithuania says it will strive to make progress toward sounder public finances, towards the implementation for the Compact for Growth and Jobs, and towards the strengthening of the EU as a global model of openness and security.
    Commission President José Manuel Barroso said the Lithuanian Presidency would be “a period of particularly hard work in the Council and in the European Parliament”.

    Source: Euractiv

    Link Read more
    Link Lithuania prepares for EU presidency
    Link Farm groups urge CAP deal by end of June

  20. Croatian fishermen: Little to celebrate under EU policy
    NEWSLETTER_CATEGORIES : Regional Fisheries, ACP-EU Policy

    Most of the 3,700 fishermen who ply their trade in Croatia's eastern Adriatic fear that the country's accession to the EU on 1 July, and strict new laws and regulations that come with it, may be the end of their jobs.
    "We'll lose the subsidies, we'll have to change our nets, fish further from the shore, there will be more competition and new restrictions, so we're looking at harder times," a fisherman said.
    Croatia's Adriatic is small and relatively shallow and fishermen use traditional nets that are not compliant with the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), modelled mostly on fishing in the Atlantic.
    Other concerns are about the vastly superior fleet from EU neighbour Italy, which – as any fishing vessel from the EU - will have open access to the eastern Adriatic.
    On the other hand, as a full member state, Croatia can now start working with Italy and Slovenia, with whom they share similar problems in the Adriatic, to press for introducing exceptions to the CFP. These would aim especially for the taking into account the specifics of the Adriatic, which is shallow in the north and deep in the south.
    However, the country predicts an overall decline in the fisheries sector, due to the numerous norms and taxes small family trades are faced with.
    Neighboring Slovenia, which shares a small part of the northern Adriatic, joined the EU in 2004 and has already seen a decline of its fishing.

    Source: Euractiv

    Link Read more
    Link Croatia joins the European Union
    Link More on the common fisheries policy in the EU

  21. Croatia joins the European Union

    As of 1st of July 2013, Croatia becomes the 28th member of the European Union bloc and the second of the former Yugoslav states to enter the EU, after Slovenia’s accession in 2004.
    Croatia is a country marked by the 1991-1995 war of independence, being  diplomatically recognized by (at the time) European Economic Community in January 1992.

    It currently has 4.4 million inhabitants, the majority of whom had voted for the country’s accession to the EU.
    "We are here on this historic night. It was your desire to join EU, and your hard work has made this possible," the president of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, said during the celebrations which took place on the night of the accession in Zagreb, the capital of Croatia.

    Source: DW.DE

    Link Read more
    Link Croatian accession to the EU historic

Please feel free to forward this newsletter to other interested colleagues.

Ms Isolina BOTO
CTA Brussels Office
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Editor: Cristina Dobos (dobos@cta.int)

If you have questions or suggestions, please write to us at : boto@cta.int
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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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