Europarlementariër Martens (CDA) komt met rapport over relatie EU-Afrika beleid (en)

The European Parliament adopted an own-initiative report drafted by Maria MARTENS (EPP-ED, NL) in response to the Commission Communication "One year after Lisbon: The Africa-EU partnership at work". The report, drafted welcomes the fact that, one year after the adoption of the Joint Africa-EU Strategy, the main components of the institutional architecture for its implementation are finally in place. The resolution was adopted with 588 votes in favour, 38 against and 13 abstentions.

The report calls for the completion of this institutional architecture by developing the parliamentary, civil society and local authority components that would give it transparency, ownership and democratic legitimacy.

Role of parliaments and non-state actors

MEPs reiterate their request to the Commissions of the EU and the African Union to involve the European and Pan-African Parliaments in the Joint Strategy.  Whilst welcoming the €55 million support programme in the 9th European Development Fund for strengthening the capacity of AU institutions, the House insists that part of this budget must be made available for strengthening the capacity of the Pan-African Parliament. 

The Action Plan indicates that each of the Africa-EU Partnerships is open for a wide range of actions but MEPs regret that overwhelming emphasis is placed on state actions and are concerned at the low level of involvement of African civil society.

Other partnerships

The Joint Strategy should also address issues which, while formally belonging to a different institutional architecture, have a profound influence on the future of Africa, such as the economic partnership agreements (EPAs), the second revision of the Cotonou Agreement, the Euro-Mediterranean Strategy and Africa’s relationship with new global players such as China and Brazil.

Peace and security, aid for trade

Parliament calls for due priority to be assigned to implementing the African peace and security architecture, stressing that the EDF is not an adequate financing source for future replenishment of the African Peace Facility and calling for a definitive solution for African Peace Facility financing.

Members insist that the final EPAs signed with African states must be primarily tools for development which respect the various beneficiaries' different capacities and levels of development. They also insist that the Commission and Member States honour their commitment to provide by 2010 at least EUR 2 billion a year in genuine 'aid for trade', the largest share of which must be for Africa.

Climate change, brain drain, affordable medicines

MEPs insist that fresh funds are needed if African states are not to pay a disproportionate price for adapting to climate change. It notes the need for a fair solution to the 'brain drain', and calls for help for African countries to apply the flexibilities provided for in the Doha Declaration on TRIPS, to facilitate access to affordable key medicines in Africa.

Special funding for the Joint Strategy

Lastly, the European Parliament calls on the EU institutions to create a specific financial instrument for implementing the Joint Strategy, centralising all existing sources of funding. It questions to what extent the Joint Strategy will be able to achieve its lofty ambitions or offer genuine added value without any new funding.