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Parliamentary questions
11 January 2006
Answer given by Mr Michel on behalf of the Commission

Ethiopia is a party to the Cotonou Agreement and therefore all rules and procedures related to delivery of cooperation foreseen in that Agreement apply to Community development aid.

The checks and balances in the monitoring of the implementation of Community aid in Ethiopia have not produced any evidence of funds being diverted from their original objectives. Were that to be, the case projects would be suspended until corrective measures are in place. Moreover, military spending has been declining as a proportion of the Government’s total budget due to a strict cash limit being applied to the Ethiopian defence budget in recent years. The share of poverty-reducing expenditure in the overall budget has risen over the same period.

The European Court of Auditors has been performing missions on a regular basis to certify the utilisation of the European Development Fund (EDF) and European Community Budget lines. The Commission has not been informed of funds from the Community being diverted by the Ethiopian Government to buy arms.

On top of this regular control by the Court, and as foreseen in the Cotonou Agreement, the Commission and the Ethiopian Government perform audits on a regular basis, and monitoring reports on the implementation of programmes and projects are drawn up.

The Humanitarian Aid provided by the Commission is not channelled through the Ethiopian Government but through European non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and International Organisations. The Commission is regularly monitoring, through its field of technical assistants, the implementation of these programmes and there is no possibility of diversion of funds from the original purposes.

As regards the implementation of the 2000 Algiers Peace Agreement between Ethiopia and Eritrea, the EU has been involved since the early negotiations as a witness of the Agreement together with the United States, South Africa, Nigeria, Algeria and the African Union. The only guarantor of the Peace Agreement is the United Nations (UN) through the UN Security Council. The witnesses are not in a position to enforce a Peace Agreement because that is the role of the United Nations.

OJ C 327, 30/12/2006
Viimane päevakajastamine: 25. mai 2006Õigusalane teave