Following the agreement reached by the EU and the government of Gambia, the European Union will allocate €365,000 to the World Food Programme (WFP), as part of the rapid response to the food crisis in the country. According to the latest updates, these funds will be used to purchase 1300 tons of food.
Depending on the political and economic reforms met by Zimbabwe by August of this year, the EU will or not revise development co-operation with the country. This statement was made by Claudia Wiedey-Nippold, the EEAS Head of Division for Southern Africa, during her visit to Zimbabwe, where she met with Foreign Affairs ministry permanent secretary Joey Bimha, weeks before the Zimbabwe-EU re-engagement dialogue, expected to be held in Brussels.
Oduor Ong'wen, the country director of the Southern and Eastern Trade Information and Negotiations Institute (SEATINI), has published an article this week in which, as many of his other African colleagues, lists the cons of the EPAs. Speaking in particular of East Africa, he agrees with the conclusions of numerous studies and points to these agreements as leading to disastrous consequences for African citizens.
According to a new report by OECD, presented this week to the Parliament, EU development aid programmes run the risk of poor institutional coordination despite positive improvements in recent years. In the words of Wiske Jult from 11.11.11, the Belgian platform of Concord, once again criticizes the External Action Service as “failing to integrate development policy in its remit and clarify its role vis-à-vis the Commission”.
During the course of the last Council meeting on Foreign Affairs, ministers have recalled their conclusions of 22-23 March 2012 on Sahel firmly condemning the seizure of power by force in Mali. The EU development cooperation with the country, which is currently on hold, will be resumed “in line with progress towards the full restoration of constitutional order”. Ongoing direct support to the population will continue as well as humanitarian aid.