In December 2011, the European Commission proposed a draft regulation for a renewed “Development Cooperation Instrument” (DCI). Once adopted by the European Parliament and the 27 Member States, this regulation will define the implementation of EU development programmes worth a proposed €23 billion over a 7-year period, with the specific aim of global poverty reduction and – in the long run – eradication.
Photo: aid in action – vaccinating children against rotavirus in Nicaragua
On 18th September, the European Parliament’s Development Committee adopted a list of amendments to the DCI regulation that effectively constitutes its negotiating mandate vis-à-vis the Member States. Members of the Committee took a firm stand on important issues such as health, agriculture and sustainable energy that – if agreed in the upcoming negotiations and written into EU legislation – will improve the lives of millions of people in developing countries.
Among others, the European Parliament proposes that:
The DCI would strengthen health systems in order to make medicines and vaccines more affordable for the poor and will support strategies to reduce maternal and child mortality;
It would support specific initiatives at regional and global level in priority areas such as child and maternal health, immunisation and HIV/AIDS;
At least 20% of DCI funds should be used for the provision of basic social services, especially health and education;
It would support sustainable agriculture, address food insecurity and malnutrition with a specific focus on the early ages of childhood;
It would support access to sustainable energy services as a key driver for poverty eradication in partner countries.
The DCI would enable the EU – in line with its commitment of providing continued support for human development – to improve peoples’ lives in line with the Millennium Development Goals;
Now that the European Parliament’s DCI team has been given its mandate, the formal negotiations with representatives of the other EU institutions and Member States will begin on 26th September. This so-called “Trialogue” process is expected to continue at the very least until mid-2013, so that programme implementation can start from 2014 onwards.
Meanwhile, the fight to save overall levels of EU aid in the next budget 2014-2020 continues. Last year ONE members successfully campaigned for the proposals on the next EU budget to include an increase in international aid. But this proposed new life-saving budget is now under threat! To take action, sign ONE’s petition to protect EU aid now!
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