33

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EU response to the Caribbean hurricanes

20-09-2017

The scenes of devastation caused by recent hurricanes in the Caribbean are a stark reminder of the destructive force of nature. As residents struggle to rebuild their lives following the passage of the latest storms, attention turns to the relief efforts. The EU can help through emergency humanitarian assistance and a variety of funding mechanisms, depending on the status of the territories concerned and their relationship with the EU.

The scenes of devastation caused by recent hurricanes in the Caribbean are a stark reminder of the destructive force of nature. As residents struggle to rebuild their lives following the passage of the latest storms, attention turns to the relief efforts. The EU can help through emergency humanitarian assistance and a variety of funding mechanisms, depending on the status of the territories concerned and their relationship with the EU.

New European consensus on development: Will it be fit for purpose?

20-04-2017

Adopted in the form of a joint declaration, the European consensus on development, more than a common banner, is a necessary precondition to the complementarity and coordination of European development policies envisaged in the EU Treaties. The redefinition of development policy in times of internal crisis and global transformation is high-stakes – while integrating the new and ambitious vision presented in Agenda 2030 is a recognised necessity, there are inherent risks to the exercise. A surfeit ...

Adopted in the form of a joint declaration, the European consensus on development, more than a common banner, is a necessary precondition to the complementarity and coordination of European development policies envisaged in the EU Treaties. The redefinition of development policy in times of internal crisis and global transformation is high-stakes – while integrating the new and ambitious vision presented in Agenda 2030 is a recognised necessity, there are inherent risks to the exercise. A surfeit of priorities may undermine the strategic character of this framework document, while exacerbating challenges of coherence and coordination. The political focus on the migration crisis may, some fear, subordinate development aid to cooperation on migration management, marking the end of values-based EU development policy. As the interinstitutional negotiations progress, the European Parliament advocates for poverty eradication to remain the main goal of development policy. Parliament defends need- and efficiency-based criteria for the allocation of development aid. It also proposes a strong reinforcement of legal tools and institutional mechanisms to implement EU-wide coordination and policy coherence for development (PCD), without which the EU contribution to Agenda 2030 implementation may be jeopardised by its internal inconsistencies.

Partnership Instrument

19-04-2017

The EU's Partnership Instrument (PI) is a foreign policy tool established under the current Multiannual Financial Framework to fund strategic cooperation with third countries on 'issues of global concern', and pursue EU objectives set out in the Europe 2020 strategy related to sustainability, trade and innovation, and EU public diplomacy. While all third countries are eligible for PI-funded cooperation, the instrument is especially aimed at middle and upper-income countries that are current or potential ...

The EU's Partnership Instrument (PI) is a foreign policy tool established under the current Multiannual Financial Framework to fund strategic cooperation with third countries on 'issues of global concern', and pursue EU objectives set out in the Europe 2020 strategy related to sustainability, trade and innovation, and EU public diplomacy. While all third countries are eligible for PI-funded cooperation, the instrument is especially aimed at middle and upper-income countries that are current or potential strategic partners to the EU.

Monitoring the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals – The Role of the Data Revolution

04-07-2016

The paper examines the transition from monitoring the Millennium Development Goals to monitoring the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the implications for developing countries, and the support that the data revolution could provide. The indicators agreed for the SDG targets are discussed in terms of data requirements and the different types of data currently collected. The potential for the data revolution to strengthen open data and access to data in terms of connectivity is also explored. ...

The paper examines the transition from monitoring the Millennium Development Goals to monitoring the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the implications for developing countries, and the support that the data revolution could provide. The indicators agreed for the SDG targets are discussed in terms of data requirements and the different types of data currently collected. The potential for the data revolution to strengthen open data and access to data in terms of connectivity is also explored. The latter is seen as being central to increasing accountability as part of the monitoring process. The paper looks into the areas that the EU might prioritise and how these could contribute to the broader Follow-Up and Review framework proposed by the UN Secretary General for consideration by the UN General Assembly, as well as offering recommendations for EU support to its development partner countries.

European Globalisation Adjustment Fund

05-04-2016

During the April I plenary session, the European Parliament is due to vote on two new applications for the mobilisation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF). At its February plenary the EP voted in favour of a previous application. The EGF provides one-off support to workers losing their jobs as a result of major structural changes in world trade patterns.

During the April I plenary session, the European Parliament is due to vote on two new applications for the mobilisation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF). At its February plenary the EP voted in favour of a previous application. The EGF provides one-off support to workers losing their jobs as a result of major structural changes in world trade patterns.

EU Policy Coherence for Development: The challenge of sustainability

22-03-2016

The EU has been at the forefront of efforts to define and implement the concept of policy coherence for development (PCD) in recent years. A range of instruments has been established to promote the inclusion of development issues in all EU policies. The workshop offered a platform for a lively debate among practitioners and researchers about the achievements of the EU in practice, the potential of recent reforms such as the better regulation package, and the lessons learnt from PCD efforts steered ...

The EU has been at the forefront of efforts to define and implement the concept of policy coherence for development (PCD) in recent years. A range of instruments has been established to promote the inclusion of development issues in all EU policies. The workshop offered a platform for a lively debate among practitioners and researchers about the achievements of the EU in practice, the potential of recent reforms such as the better regulation package, and the lessons learnt from PCD efforts steered by the OECD at international level. As regards the security-development nexus, speakers highlighted both the progress made in enhancing PCD, for example through the comprehensive approach, and the risks of 'securitising' development policy. The Sustainable Development Goals, which include a target for 'Policy Coherence of Sustainable Development', have added a new layer to the debate. The UN views PCSD as a key factor in facilitating the achievement of the SDGs, and the OECD has taken the concept fully on board. But there are also critical voices which fear that the broader approach could lead to the dilution of the clearly defined legal obligation enshrined in the EU treaties. There was some consensus that PCD needs high-level political engagement to be effective.

Autor externo

Maurizio CARBONE and Mark FURNESS

Research for REGI Committee - Enhancing the Competitiveness of SMEs

15-02-2016

Small and Medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are essential to the economies of EU regions, both in terms of employment and competitiveness . In 2014, SMEs employed almost 90 million people and it has been estimated that for every km2 of land surface the EU has an average of 5 SMEs. Almost all SMEs (93%) are micro enterprises and employ less than 10 people and the majority of SMEs are active in the five following sectors: ‘wholesale and retail trade’, ‘manufacturing’, ‘construction’, ‘business services ...

Small and Medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are essential to the economies of EU regions, both in terms of employment and competitiveness . In 2014, SMEs employed almost 90 million people and it has been estimated that for every km2 of land surface the EU has an average of 5 SMEs. Almost all SMEs (93%) are micro enterprises and employ less than 10 people and the majority of SMEs are active in the five following sectors: ‘wholesale and retail trade’, ‘manufacturing’, ‘construction’, ‘business services’ and ‘accommodation and food services’. For the 2014-2020 period the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESI Funds) support investments in SMEs through all thematic objectives, particularly through Thematic Objective 3 (TO3) on enhancing the competitiveness of SMEs, of the agricultural sector (for the EAFRD) and of the fishery and aquaculture sector (for the EMFF). In order to first evaluate the main challenges of the implementation of TO3, the European Parliament Committee on Regional Development (EP REGI) requested the Policy Department for Structural and Cohesion Policies to draw up this briefing in support of the ongoing implementation report on "Enhancing the competitiveness of SMEs" (Rapporteur: Rosa D'Amato).

How the EU budget is spent: Humanitarian Aid

23-11-2015

The European Union's expenditure for humanitarian aid provides needs-based, emergency response to natural disasters and man-made crises outside the Union's borders, in order to preserve life, prevent and alleviate human suffering, and maintain the human dignity of those affected. The EU remains a leading global donor of humanitarian aid, as well as an example for a high standard of humanitarian aid delivery. Despite that, it still faces challenges in responding to the growing demand for humanitarian ...

The European Union's expenditure for humanitarian aid provides needs-based, emergency response to natural disasters and man-made crises outside the Union's borders, in order to preserve life, prevent and alleviate human suffering, and maintain the human dignity of those affected. The EU remains a leading global donor of humanitarian aid, as well as an example for a high standard of humanitarian aid delivery. Despite that, it still faces challenges in responding to the growing demand for humanitarian assistance worldwide.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: 17 Goals Agreed, Now for the Hard Part

23-09-2015

After more than two years of consultations and negotiations, 193 UN member states agreed on 2 August 2015 to a new sustainable development agenda that is as ambitious as it is fraught with potential pitfalls. Titled ‘Transforming our world: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development‘, the agenda will be formally adopted at the UN summit on 25-27 September in New York. With 17 sustainable development goals (SGDs), it aims for an economic and societal transformation, integrating all three pillars ...

After more than two years of consultations and negotiations, 193 UN member states agreed on 2 August 2015 to a new sustainable development agenda that is as ambitious as it is fraught with potential pitfalls. Titled ‘Transforming our world: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development‘, the agenda will be formally adopted at the UN summit on 25-27 September in New York. With 17 sustainable development goals (SGDs), it aims for an economic and societal transformation, integrating all three pillars of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental. The sectorial scope of the new agenda is enormous, including areas such as migration, industrialisation and energy. The SDGs are universal in nature, creating responsibilities for all countries, spanning domestic development outcomes, assistance to other countries and global public goods. The EU has played a major role in the process and has fought hard for the inclusion of EU values such as human rights and good governance, and for effective implementation and review processes. The ambitious agenda creates implementation challenges at all levels, including indicators and data collection, communication and outreach, the financing challenge and the balance between universality and national ownership.

Towards More Effective Global Humanitarian Action: How the EU Can Contribute

15-06-2015

The World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) in May 2016 will be the culmination of a global consultation process. The three-year initiative responds to the need to adapt the humanitarian system in order to make humanitarian action more efficient and effective in keeping pace with the rapidly changing context of emergencies. Consultations leading up to the Summit have provided the opportunity to gain perspectives from different regions of the world. As a result, three main priorities have been highlighted ...

The World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) in May 2016 will be the culmination of a global consultation process. The three-year initiative responds to the need to adapt the humanitarian system in order to make humanitarian action more efficient and effective in keeping pace with the rapidly changing context of emergencies. Consultations leading up to the Summit have provided the opportunity to gain perspectives from different regions of the world. As a result, three main priorities have been highlighted: the need for humanitarians to protect and preserve the dignity of people affected by conflict and disaster; a call to find innovative and sustainable ways of meeting people's needs; and a demand from the global South to 'localise' humanitarian response by strengthening local, national and regional capacities to prevent, manage and respond to crisis. There is potential for the European Union (EU) to take a leadership role in the process and influence the WHS outcome. ECHO´s new need assessment tools and the Linking Relief Rehabilitation and Development (LRRD) as well as Resilience approaches offer a framework for responding to the challenges posed by protracted crises. This study recommends that the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid should be applied as a model for a 'Global Consensus on Humanitarian Action' or a 'Global Compact' recognising the diversity of today's humanitarian response system while taking advantage of all actors' complementary role. Furthermore, the EU and member states must commit to placing protection at the centre of humanitarian action and ensure that the EU´s humanitarian aid is not regarded as a crisis management tool, and allowed to become an instrument of its foreign policy.

Autor externo

Cristina Churruca Muguruza (Institute of Human Rights, University of Deusto, NOHA Network of Universities in Humanitarian Action, Spain)

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