The so-called COP21 agreement will come into force after it is ratified by at least 55 countries that account for at least 55 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Those countries will then be legally bound by it. The Commission's new proposal comes just weeks after the EU and 174 countries formally signed the Paris agreement, the world's first universal legally binding deal to tackle climate change, in New York. In an announcement on Friday, the Commission said it intends, in the coming months, to propose state targets to reduce emissions in those sectors not covered by the EU emissions trading system, such as transport, agriculture and buildings
This year, the G7 summit will take place from 26 to 27 May in Ise-Shima (Japan). The European Union will be represented by the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, and the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk. The main topics on the agenda, as set out by this year's Japan presidency, are the global economy, investment, trade, the refugee crisis, climate change and energy, the fight against terrorism, foreign policy and development. Leaders will also discuss several global health policy issues, gender equality and women’s rights (...) Traditionally, a number of third country heads of state and government, as well as chairpersons of international organisations, are invited to participate in parts of the summit. From ASEAN member states, the heads of state and government of Laos, Vietnam, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Papua New Guinea are invited. In addition, the President of Chad – the current Chairperson of the African Union – and, from the international organisations, the chairpersons of the UN, OECD, ADB, IMF and the World Bank are invited. As the Ise-Shima summit is the first summit held in Asia in eight years, the Japanese hosts have indicated that the topic of one of the outreach meetings will focus on Asia. In another outreach session, participants will address the Sustainable Development Goals, with a focus on Africa.
Leaders from the 79 countries of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States are expected in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea on 30th May – 1st June for the 8th ACP Summit of Heads of State and Government. The Summit will discuss the future of the ACP Group as a revitalised cohesive force advocating the interests of its member states in the international arena. Discussions will take into consideration recent key international developments, including Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals, issues of migration, climate change and the fight against terrorism. The Government of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea has confirmed the advanced state of preparations towards hosting the Summit, which will be chaired by its Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Peter O’Neill, who takes over from the current President-in-Office, H.E Mr. Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, President of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea. “This is a very important event, taking place at an important time in the history of the ACP Group. The future of the organisation, in terms of where it goes after the expiration of the Cotonou Agreement [the comprehensive agreement between the ACP Group and its main development partner, the European Union] in 2020 is a fundamental issue with flow-on consequences… It’s about legacy creation,” stated the Minister of Foreign Affairs of PNG, Hon. Rimbink Pato.
An emergency response vehicle and 208 water tanks have been provided to the Republic of the Marshall Islands this week as part of ongoing support to boost emergency response efforts in the small Pacific Island nation. The timely gesture has been made possible through the European Union’s €19.37million Building Safety and Resilience in the Pacific Project (BSRP), implemented by the Pacific Community (SPC). The European Union Ambassador for the Pacific, H.E. Andrew Jacobs presented the emergency response vehicle to the National Disaster Management Office in the capital, Majuro, today and will travel to the outer atolls of Marshall Islands including Aur, Tobal and Maloelap to see firsthand the important work of drought response and solar projects that are occurring in these communities. Maloelap is one of the 14 atoll islands that were electrified with 100 solar home systems under the EU-SPC partnership through the North Pacific ACP Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Project (North-REP).
The European Union has reaffirmed its support for Fiji in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Winston and says detailed discussions will be held in the coming weeks on European assistance in the recovery and rebuilding phase. The assurance was made by the European Commission’s Director for Asia and the Pacific responsible for Europe Aid, Pierre Amilhat, at a meeting in Frankfurt, Germany, with the Attorney-General and Minister for Finance, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum. Mr Amilhat said he intended to hold talks with the AG in the next few weeks to canvass a number of areas of support, including initiatives and programs for the sugar cane industry. The two men discussed the Post Disaster Needs Assessment Report on Cyclone Winston, which has been jointly prepared by the European Union, the World Bank, the United Nations and the Asian Development Bank. The Report is a comprehensive assessment of the damage caused by Cyclone Winston and the needs of Fijians living in the affected areas.
European Union represents the most successful process of regional integration and remains the richest continent in the world, says EU ambassador to Fiji and the Pacific Andrew Jacobs. Speaking at the Europe Day celebrations in Suva, Jacobs said despite the difficulties faced by the union, there was much to be celebrated. “Over the years our union has grown from six members in 1957 to twenty-eight, with 500 million people,” Jacobs said. “The dreams of our founding fathers have become a reality and Europeans live together in peace and prosperity, bound together by principles of democracy and human rights. “We have a responsibility to our own citizens and also to the rest of the world.” Jacobs said the union would continue to strengthen its relationship and partnership with Fiji and the rest of the Pacific Island countries in addressing climate change after the Paris Agreement. “The EU and Pacific partners were, and remain, leading members of the High Ambition Coalition that pushed the bar high and got results.
The Netherlands government has pledged 1,5 million euros to Zimbabwe as assistance towards fighting the effects of the El Nino-induced drought. This is part of the 8 million euros that was pledged to Southern Africa by the Dutch government. Speaking at the Netherlands National King's Day celebrations last Thursday, Netherlands Ambassador to Zimbabwe Ms Gera Sneller said this would help enhance mutual relations between the two countries. "El Nino has hit Zimbabwe hard and the Government has been forced to declare it an emergency situation. "The Netherlands is among the countries that have responded to the request for assistance and recently my government pledged 8 million euros to WFP and FAO to help combat the current crisis in the region as well as increase the resilience of people and systems. Of this pledge, 1.5 million euros is earmarked for Zimbabwe," said Ms Sneller.
Last week, the EU’s most senior foreign affairs, development and emergency aid officials travelled to Addis Ababa to pledge a further €122 million in European aid to head off the deteriorating humanitarian crisis in the country from heading into a full-blown famine. It was a mark of the gravity of the El Niño weather phenomenon, a rising of surface sea temperatures, exacerbated by climate change, which has the contradictory affects of increasing both flooding, and – in large parts of East Africa and the Horn of Africa – droughts. Ethiopia – a country of some 100 million people – has been the worst affected, with more than 10% of its population reliant on food aid for survival.
Harvesting a crop in Cameroon’s Far North Region is becoming an increasingly uncertain proposition. Armed conflict between Boko Haram militants and Cameroon’s armed forces in the region has made it difficult for some farmers to access their fields, deepening food security, said Felix Gomez, the World Food Programme’s country director (...) Just as problematic, climate change is gradually rendering the traditional agricultural calendar unreliable, making just getting in a crop hard work, farmers in the region say.
The European Commission announces €122.5 million to help Ethiopia deal with a deteriorating humanitarian situation caused by the El Niño extreme weather phenomenon. Today the European Commission has announced €122.5 million for Ethiopia to address the immediate needs of people affected by the worsening humanitarian situation caused by one of the most severe extreme El Niño weather phenomenon on record. This new support aims to combine a humanitarian response and early recovery assistance with initiatives that address the root causes of fragility and vulnerability