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Wednesday, 07 December 2011

Europeans citizens support development cooperation

In an interview conducted by Europolitics, Andris Piebalgs highlights some of the key issues for greater aid effectiveness, core debate in Busan, South Korea. He stresses the importance of coordinated action among Member states.  Speaking of China he hopes this latter plays an active role in this discussion and then participates in the partnership. He highlights that European citizens support development cooperation.

Coordinated action among EU donors is, according to Development commissioner, one of the best strategies to “increase the impact of aid”.  He says that countries such as France and Germany are very supportive and details some of the projects ongoing:  “We have started joint programming of EU aid in Haiti and South Sudan and we will do it soon in ten more countries, mainly in Africa and Latin America.”

Piebalgs says that he expected that China “would endorse the Paris and Accra declarations, action by action” and “behave like any other EU member states when delivering aid around the world, abiding by the same principles” .  Nevertheless, this is not the case yet and “south-south cooperation remains different from North-South cooperation”. “Yet, it would be wrong not to congratulate the Chinese […] for them to join the partnership is a very good step forward” he adds.

Piebalgs stresses that developing countries fear a shortage of EU aid and less trade with Europe but he also underlines that “European citizens support development cooperation”, fact that “gives [the EU] strong credibility in the future”. Development commissioner adds, however, that he is likely to answer more questions on the crisis than on his responsibilities: “we should be proud that everybody cares about Europe but we should also realise how concerned the rest of the world is and should tackle the problem as fast as possible”.


Source: Europolitics