Blog-Beitrag

EU's new strategy with Africa at the wrong time

On the 10th March the European Commission presents its 'New Strategy with Africa'. However it does not make sense to present a new strategy at the moment because the central political and financial foundations are missing and African partners have not been consulted.

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"New Strategy with Africa" of the EU Commission On 4th March the European Commission presents its 'New Strategy with Africa'. However it does not make sense to present a new strategy at the moment because the central political and financial foundations are missing and African partners have not been consulted in any way. The financial bases for the European Union's cooperation with Africa are currently completely open. The EU is currently discussing the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). This framework also includes the finances for the EU's international cooperation. It is still completely open how many resources will be available for Africa and whether these will become part of the budget or will be managed in a separate fund, as is currently the case. It is also unclear whether the UK will be part of this fund or not. Politically, too, the foundations are lacking: the EU is negotiating with almost all African as well as many Caribbean and Pacific states (African-Caribbean-Pacific states or ACP states) the political foundations of cooperation in the framework of the successor to the so-called Cotonou Agreement.

 

Missing consultations with African actors

From Brot für die Welt's point of view, a partnership at eye level requires that the EU first clarifies the financial basis, then negotiates the political basis with the African states and finally builds up its strategy. The current presentation of the strategy does not show a good understanding of partnership and cooperation. "The EU has failed to involve the African states and civil society in drawing up its Africa Strategy. There was no need to present the strategy now. We call on the Commission to ensure that the current document can only be understood as a first draft, which will then be adopted jointly after discussions with civil society at the EU-AU summit in autumn". The new strategy must initiate a change of course in cooperation with Africa. The last EU-Africa summit in Côte d'Ivoire, Abidjan, which was supposed to mark an equal partnership, has become a farce. New approaches are needed in two places. There is a need for a different migration policy that is geared to human rights, does not shift the burden onto African countries and allows concrete steps to be taken to facilitate regular migration to Europe. Economic cooperation between Africa and the EU must not serve European export and investment interests unilaterally, but should strengthen regional economic cycles in Africa and create urgently needed jobs there. That is ultimately the best incentive to stay.

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