Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

July 2017
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EDITO
Saturday, 22 July 2017

DGs ECFIN and DEVCO jointly hosted an all-day workshop on Thursday 2 February, on private sector participation in development finance. The objective was to showcase a variety of innovative cases which might inspire instruments under the new European Fund for Sustainable Development (EFSD). There was strong interest in the event, with around 140 people taking part from a variety of organizations including international finance institutions (EIB, EBRD, World Bank), other development finance institutions, private investors and representatives from the EP (notably the BUDG committee secretariat). Following the announcement of the Commission's new European Fund for Sustainable Development (EFSD), this workshop aimed to showcase a number of innovative blending instruments to demonstrate how these tools could be further developed with support from the Fund.

Monday, 13 February 2017

The UK’s National Audit Office says the number of fraud investigations has increased in tandem with more public money being delivered to “fragile” countries where bribery can be seen as “cultural norm”. Euractiv’s media partner The Guardian reports. Fraud investigations involving foreign aid have quadrupled over five years as more public money is given to “fragile” countries, a UK government spending watchdog has found. Reforms introduced by David Cameron to increase funding and assign it to unstable nations have increased the risk of wrongdoing, according to the National Audit Office.

Thursday, 09 February 2017

The Commission took the opportunity provided by the September 2016 mid-term review/revision of the MFF 2014-2020 to propose the creation of a new innovative financial instrument – the European Fund for Sustainable Development (EFSD). The EFSD is part of the partnership framework for cooperation with countries with high irregular emigration and is one of the pillars of the new external investment plan, inspired by the success of the investment plan for Europe.

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Tanzania Horticulture Association's (TAHA) efforts to boost horticultural production in the country have attracted a five million US dollar (over 10bn/-) funding from Sweden. Speaking shortly after signing the five-year deal, the Deputy Head of Mission responsible for Development Corporation Division (DCD) at the Swedish Embassy in Dar es Salaam, Mr Ulf Källsting said the funding will straight go to improve production by small holder farmers struggling to meet international market standards.

From support for 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence to supporting forestry programmes, Finnish aid to Tanzania cannot be overstated. It is imperative that we remember how effectively Finland has aligned its assistance funding with Tanzania's development needs vis-à-vis the National Five Year Development Plan 2016/17-2020/21 and Vision 2025. Despite a reduction in development aid from the Finnish government to countries such as Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Zambia and Nepal, Finland still maintains a huge assistance programme.

President Professor Peter Mutharika Friday commended the European Union (EU) for the development and humanitarian aid rendered to the country. Speaking when he held an audience with EU delegation in Lilongwe at Kamuzu Palace, Mutharika said EU is one of the biggest partners Malawi has since 1975 and the country has benefited a lot from the partnership. He said EU has engaged herself in assisting the country in the areas of agriculture, education and governance among others. "As of now EU is helping the country in humanitarian aid by assisting the 6.7 million people who have been affected by hunger and drought due to climate change.

A number of cocoa farms devastated by Tropical Cyclone Winston will benefit from assistance provided by the European Union and Pacific Community in an effort to to boost the productivity of the agricultural sector after the cyclone struck early this year. The assistance is being made possible through the Increasing Agriculture Commodity Trade (IACT) project TC Winston Recovery Action; a FJD4.3 million initiative funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the Pacific Community (SPC). The first recipient, Tomohito Zukoshi, co-founder of Fijiana Cocoa and Adi Chocolate brands, has recently received equipment needed to clear cocoa plantations and improve cocoa productivity.

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

At the time of decolonisation in the 1960's and 1970's, the then EEC brought together a strange collection of former European colonies in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific islands (called the ACP group). It was just at the time that the UK was joining the EEC, and so the group included all the former British, French, Dutch, Belgian and eventually Portuguese ex-colonies. Oddly, it did not include any of the former Spanish colonies. The ACP group was formed in 1975, and since then, the EU has paid substantial amounts of aid through the European development fund, which is replenished by its members every seven years.

International donors yesterday (17 November) pledged $2.2 billion (€2 billion) in aid for strife-torn Central African Republic, one of the world’s poorest countries, officials said. “The positive response you have given … will galvanise our efforts and make sure our recovery plans bear fruit,” Central African Republic President Faustin-Archange Touadera said after a donors’ conference in Brussels. The pledges topped the $1.6 billion Touadera had wanted over three years to kick-start the devastated economy but were short of the $3.0 billion targeted for the five-year programme.

Major NGOs gave a guarded welcome today (22 November) to a major once-in-a-decade, overhaul of the EU’s thinking on development. The Commission – fronted in a Strasbourg press conference, in a sign of the weight it gives the issue, by foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini, Commission First Vice President Frans Timmermans and Development Commissioner Neven Mimica – unveiled a trilogy of papers setting out the future of development and aid spending between now and 2030.