Hello and welcome. My name is Eva Joly. I am a Green MEP from France and I chair the European Parliament's development committee.
More than a billion people around the world live in extreme poverty. Many more face hunger and disease or have no access to healthcare or education. And, increasingly, people in poor countries face the devastating effects of climate change.
The citizens of Europe firmly believe that the EU has a duty to put a stop to poverty and suffering in a world where there is enough for everybody, if fairly shared. Most Europeans are, like me, proud that Europe gives more in development aid than anyone else — billions of euros every year.
It is my job — and the job of the members of the development committee — to make sure the EU does as much as it can to help those who need our help. And to make sure we are spending our money wisely overseas.
So what do we do? We help set the budget. We keep a close watch on the European Commission and everyone else who puts Europe's development policies and humanitarian aid into practice. And, together with EU member countries, we make the laws that frame our development activities.
We also meet frequently to discuss with politicians and experts from around the world about the situation on the ground and what's really needed. And when we can we go and see for ourselves, in places like Gaza, Haiti and Nepal.