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Newsletter 228

Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

October 2018
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Sunday, 21 October 2018

European Parliament (Brussels):
- 22nd June: Hearing on the external dimension of the Common Fisheries Policy
- 22nd June: Commissioner De Gucht at the Committee on International Trade
EU Presidency:
- 24th June (Luxembourg): Council of Telecommunications, Transport and Energy
ACP Secretariat (Ougadougou):
- 21st – 22nd June: 35th Session of the ACP-EC Council of Ministers

For more information please consult the calendar on our webpage http://brussels.cta.int/

Our video guest this week is Mr. Peter Wobst. He is Senior Economist and Leader of the Rural Employment Team of the Gender, Equity and Rural Employment Division at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome.
The ability of poor rural communities around the world to access finance received a significant boost earlier today with the creation of Rural Impulse II, a new specialist microfinance fund backed by leading public and private financial institutions and investors. The European Investment Bank, IFC – part of the World Bank Group, KfW Entwicklungsbank (The German Development Bank), the Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries and Netherlands Development Finance Company formally agreed to participate in the fund.
The European Union is giving an additional $29 million to aid countries in north Africa's Sahel region suffering from drought and poor harvests. EU Development Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva told reporters Wednesday that the new aid will help alleviate the impact of food scarcities, which are only getting worse in the region. The money is in addition to $24 million the EU commission says it has pledged to Sahel this year. Humanitarian programs will target more than seven million people in Niger, Chad, Burkina Faso and northern Nigeria.
Mauritius sugar output is seen falling to 450,000 tonnes this year from 467,234 tonnes in 2009 largely due to a reduced area under cultivation and poor weather, the Chamber of Agriculture said on Friday. Sugar, a centuries-old pillar of the Indian Ocean island's now almost $10 billion economy, accounts for roughly 3% of gross domestic product, the chamber says, and is a major employer. "Small planters are abandoning sugar cane cultivation," Jocelyn Kwok, secretary general of the chamber, told Reuters in an interview. "We have been losing about 2,200 hectares of sugar cane fields (annually).
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