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Parliamentary questions
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6 August 2012
Answer given by Mr Piebalgs on behalf of the Commission
Question reference: E-005777/2012

The Commission is aware of the controversies surrounding the banana sector in Cameroon and is very careful when tailoring the EU support. A number of studies and evaluations have been conducted since the end of the 1990s. They are contributing to design the current EU approach.

In January 2012, the Commission communicated guidelines for the programming phase of the Bananas Accompanying Measures (BAM) to EU Delegations. Through the BAM, the Commission proposes to support adaptation of targeted ACP countries to the reduced most favoured nation tariffs for imports of bananas. At the same time, the BAM will contribute to reduce poverty, to foster sustainable growth and to ensure the countries' smooth integration into the world economy. One of the priorities is to focus on the broader impacts generated by the adaptation process related (but not restricted) to employment, social services, and environmental issues, particularly in local communities and the most vulnerable groups.

The draft country strategy is currently being prepared by the Commission. Its objective is to achieve competitiveness whilst respecting strict social and environmental norms, in order to generate decent employment and to improve the country's trade balance. The country programme is at the formulation stage and the Commission will assure that social and environmental indicators which will be jointly agreed between the Commission, the Government of Cameroon and the stakeholders, will be taken into consideration.

Finally, the Cameroonian programme, like all other EU financed support actions, will be accompanied by both an internal monitoring system and external independent assessments and evaluations.

OJ C 262 E, 11/09/2013
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