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Thursday, 28 June 2012

Big step forward for EU-Liberia relations

In what is seen as a major step forward in EU's relations with Liberia, the Managing Director for Africa in the European External Action Service (EEAS) Dr. Nick Westcott,  has announced the launch of a structured and regular political dialogue between the EU and the African country, as set out in Article 8 of the Cotonou Agreement.
Dr. Westcott led an EU delegation composed of Attilio Pacifici, Head of Delegation, and four EU Heads of Mission permanently represented (France, Germany, Sweden and the UK) in a first consultation with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and senior government ministers.
Subjects discussed with the President included the political reconciliation process, strengthening of institutions of democracy, development priorities, and regional issues, including challenges for ECOWAS and the African Union such as the crisis in Mali and other parts of the fragile region of West Africa.
The EU pledged continued support for regional integration, and the real advantages offered by an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the EU were also discussed. Future development support was also discussed with the Liberian President. Later this year, discussions will begin on EU's development assistance to Liberia up to 2020, which will focus on supporting Vision 2030 and Liberia's second Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS).

Source: All Africa