June 2016
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 Video guest: Erich Schaitza




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EDITO
Thursday, 30 June 2016

Ethiopia is being hit hard by one the most severe El Niño phenomenon on record. Numbers speak for themselves – in the past year, the number of food insecure people has increased from 2.9 million to over 10 million at present, write Neven Mimica and Christos Stylianides.This is on top of the almost 8 million chronically food insecure people in the country (...) Since the winter of 2015, the EU has mobilised around €44 million of humanitarian aid to help the victims of El Niño in Ethiopia. In addition, we have just announced an additional €24 million to respond to emergency needs of over 730 000 refugees and some 400 000 Internally Displaced People.

Sugar production in Mozambique will decline this year because of the drought hitting sugar production areas in the south and centre of the country. According to Joao Jeque, the executive director of the Mozambican Association of Sugar Producers (APAMO), in 2015 the sector produced 3.3 million tonnes of sugar cane, but the drought guarantees that this amount cannot be produced in the current campaign. Jeque was speaking on Friday at an international sugar conference in Maputo, which was discussing how to improve the production and marketing of sugar

Monday, 04 April 2016

The Netherlands has today imposed a first-ever sanction on a Dutch company for violating the European Timber Regulation. The sanction follows a Greenpeace investigation into the controversial Cameroonian timber trader CCT, who is sourcing timber from companies involved in illegally logging and exporting timber to several countries in Europe, including the Netherlands.(...) CCT is trading in timber sourced from highly destructive logging operations, several of which were exposed to be involved in illegal logging according to a Greenpeace report published last year. Greenpeace traced the timber from CCT to many importers in Europe, including one Dutch company, Fibois BV in Purmerend.

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

An Italian engineering company has been reported to the OECD because the dam it is building is set to destroy the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of people in Kenya and Ethiopia. Survival International (SI)‚ a global movement for the rights of tribal peoples‚ reported engineering giant Salini to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development over the construction of the dam‚ which has cut off the Omo River’s regular flooding‚ which 100‚000 people rely on to water their crops and livestock.

Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston's impact on Fiji's agriculture sector and homes total over $409million. The agriculture sector incurred a loss of $208.3m while damage on homes was about $201m. The agriculture assessment is $82.32m more than the $US60m (approximately $F125.98m) estimated by the UN when it launched its 90-day flash appeal two weeks ago. Ministry of Agriculture permanent secretary Uraia Waibuta said the damage to the sector included crops, livestock and infrastructure, but excluding the sugar sector. The sugarcane industry incurred a loss of around $120m, $87m of which was estimated for crop damage and $12m for farmers' residences.


The Fiji Crop and Livestock Council (FCLC) had the opportunity last week to listen to registered commodity farmer members on the challenges Tropical Cyclone Winston imposed on their respective commodities.The Farmers’ National Committee Association’s planning workshop that was held in Suva turned into a needs assessment for the heads of national commodity associations and member farmers. FCLC Chairman Simon Cole said the dialogue provided a very structured and common sense approach to the economic recovery of the agricultural sector for all the commodities that FCLC represents.

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) is a United Nations specialised agency responsible for regulating international shipping. Since 1959, when it met for the first time, the IMO's overarching objectives have been the improvement of maritime safety and the prevention of marine pollution, to which maritime security was added later. The organisation's functioning reflects the diverging interests of its 171 member states acting in diverse capacities as port, coastal and flag states on the one hand, and as developed, developing or least developed states, on the other.

Thursday, 03 March 2016

The second Steering Committee of the programme of the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) - regional / Indian Ocean strand met at the premises of the Conseil Départemental, Mayotte. In our region, the actions of this programme financed by the European Union focus on sustainable management of the natural assets of Mayotte and the îles Eparses, and are the fruit of a partnership between the Conseil Départemental de Mayotte, the regional authority of the Terres Australes et Antarctiques Françaises (TAAF) and the French Development Agency (FDA).

Friday, 12 February 2016

Representatives of Liberia and the EU have met to review progress towards implementation of their Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA), which aims to ensure Liberia exports only legal timber products to the EU. The Liberia-EU VPA Joint Implementation Committee (JIC) met for the 3rd time on 20-22 January in Monrovia. The JIC is the body established to oversee the implementation of the agreement. “I am really encouraged by the progress we have made in the implementation of this agreement since our last meeting,” said Sister Mary Laurene Browne, Chair of the Board of Liberia’s Forest Development Authority (FDA) and Co-Chair of the JIC.

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Tonga is one of four Pacific island countries chosen by the Commonwealth Secretariat in London for a study of small island states that looks at governance and levels of vulnerability and resilience to external shocks. Visiting Nuku’alofa this week a team of three researchers were building up a profile of Tonga’s strengths and weaknesses in its ability to govern itself and respond to challenges of many kinds. The information was gathered through consultation and surveys presented at a Resilience Profiling Workshop for different sectors held at the Fa’onelua Convention Centre on January 25, presented by Dr Denny Lewis-Bynoe, the Commonwealth Secretariat’s Adviser and Head of Climate Finance and Small States Economic Policy, with Mr Wonderful Hope Khonje, Economic Officer, and Mr Jean Paul Fabri, a consultant.