Source: EU News no. 4, May 2008
Under this title, the Council adopted on 26 and 27 May a long series of conclusions divided into 7 sections. These conclusions follow the adoption of a package of communications by the EC that we presented in the previous issue of the EU News. The conclusions provide an overview of the way the EU will position itself in the three main events that will take place before the end of 2008, the third High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness – HLF (Accra, 2-4 September), the UN High Level Event on the MDGs (New York, 25 September) and the International Conference on Financing for Development (Doha, 29 November-2 December).
On many aspects the Council conclusions are quite disappointing as they don’t propose concrete and ambitious measures and targets and too often only confirm previous commitments. There is still scope for improvement before and during the June EU Summit with the adoption of an action plan on the MDGs and a further debate on the establishment of binding timetables by the MS to reach their ODA target of 0.7% by 2015.
Through their inputs in the Accra Agenda of Action (AAA) and in the preparation of the round tables to take place at the HLF, the EC and the most progressive Member States have still other opportunities to upgrade the ambitions of the HLF. The final EU position for the HLF as such will be drafted during the summer and in the case the MS are not satisfied with the outcome of the AAA, nothing will prevent them from adopting separate EU targets and plan of action as it was the case in 2005.
There will be more room to influence the EU position towards the Doha meeting on Finance for Development during and after the summer with the preparation of an EC communication to be discussed with the MS in September. The French NGO platform, Coordination Sud organises a conference on the issue on the 1st of July at the start of the French presidency of the Union.
For more information and NGO positions on the Accra HLF on Aid effectiveness go to www.betteraid.org
Check also the Euforic newsfeed and dossier on aid effectiveness