Foreign affairs and international relations
Migration and revision of the European development policy discussed by the EU Foreign Affairs Council – Development
The EU member states evaluated the progress achieved since the foundation of the EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa during the joint summit in La Valletta in November last year. Slovakia contributed €600,000 within the V4’s €3 million commitment.
The goals of the fund include creating economic and job opportunities on the African continent (through actions such as vocational training and micro-businesses), improving the quality of public administration, conflict prevention, reducing forced displacement and illegal migration.
“We consider it necessary to focus on the causes of migration and cooperate with the countries of origin and transit,” said Parízek, State Secretary of the diplomacy department, adding that Slovakia also sees as beneficial the participation of the private sector with its growing expertise in the development area.
The Council discussed the issues of forced displacement and development and adopted conclusions. The discussion also focused on the need to interlink the humanitarian and development aspects related to displacement.
Parízek said Slovakia puts strong emphasis on the humanitarian-development axis. “We are convinced that education must be in the focus of our attention. Lack of education and absence of prospects for a job and life in dignity belong among the driving forces of migration,” he specified.
The mentioned conclusions also present the European Union’s contribution to the World Humanitarian Summit scheduled to take place in Istanbul at the end of May. The United Nations Secretary-General convened this first-ever summit in response to the unprecedented increase in the number of victims of conflicts and natural disasters, including the highest number of displaced persons since World War II. The goal is to design new and more effective solutions to provide humanitarian aid to make sure it meets the needs of the people who depend on it.
Revision of the European development policy
FAC – Development also discussed the need to fulfil the sustainable development goals adopted at the 2015 UN Summit. An overall revision of the EU development policy is expected in relation to their adoption.
“The revision must include views of wider civic society and other relevant stakeholders such as the private sector and academic community,” underscored MFEA SR State Secretary Parízek.
The key documents concerning the revision should be tabled during Slovakia’s Presidency of the Council of the EU and the policy discussion of them could take place at the November meeting of the FAC – Development.
The wording of the Council conclusions on forced displacement and development: http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2016/05/12-conclusions-on-forced-displacement-and-development