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Sunday, 22 October 2017

Council of the EU

20 July: Foreign Affairs Council

ACP Secretariat

20-23 July: Meeting of ACP Ministers in charge of Fisheries and Aquaculture

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The CTA Brussels News Service is providing EU-ACP policy news since 2004, on various key thematic areas. In addition to this news service, we also provide news on ACP intra-regional trade, and south-south cooperation (investments of emerging countries' in agriculture in the ACP regions). The main stories for the week are featured in our newsletter and all stories can be found in our Regional Trade and the South-South cooperation sections.

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On the sidelines of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development – on 14th July, from 13:15 – 14:45, in the Jupiter Hotel Conference Hall, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia – CTA co-organised the  “Financing Investments and Agribusiness for Food and Nutrition Security: Public and Private Sector Coordination” high-level panel with the ACP and UNFAO.  The panel discussed the importance of private and public sector investments in the agrifood sector, which benefit small-scale farmers, SMEs and value chain actors. The high-level speakers addressed various approaches on the topic of financing investments and agribusiness, ranging from policy support at country level; the operationalization of the policy framework for enhanced and structured engagement of aid programs with the private sector; the need to leverage private finance in development, the mechanisms in place to support SMEs in the agrifood sector, and the urgency to support inclusive and profitable value chains.

In a recent visit to South America, Pope Francis denounced a “new colonialism” by agencies that impose austerity programs, called for the poor to have the “sacred rights” of labour, lodging and land, and urged for the onset world economic order. The Pope asked for forgiveness for the sins committed by the Roman Catholic Church vis-à-vis native Americans during the conquest of America and underlined that poor countries today should not be reduced to being providers of raw material and cheap labour for developed countries. He denounced what he called, “the mentality of profit at any price, with no concern for social exclusion or the destruction of nature,” as he called for real structural change from an intolerable system. In his words,  “This system is by now intolerable: farm workers find it intolerable, labourers find it intolerable, communities find it intolerable, peoples find it intolerable …”

The Third Meeting of the Joint CARIFORUM-European Union (EU) Council under the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) is taking place in Guyana. It is the first political engagement, between CARIFORUM and the EU, on the Joint CARIFORUM-EU Five Year Review of the EPA. The Meeting is being held under the chairmanship of Hon. Oliver Joseph, Minister of Economic Development, Planning, Trade, Cooperatives and International Business of Grenada and several Cariforum states are represented at the Ministerial level. The EU is represented by Mr. Jean Asselborn, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Luxembourg representing the Council of the European Union, and Mrs. Cecilia Malmström, Commissioner for Trade, European Commission. In her opening speech, Commissioner Malmström underlined the importance of meeting in the historically important destination of Georgetown where the ACP was born through the Georgetown Agreement 40years ago.

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