Monday, 6 February 2012

CONCORD Report on the EEAS 1st Year of Activity

A new report recently released by CONCORD outlines that the European Union is marginalizing anti-poverty objectives within its new foreign policy arm, the External Action Service (EEAS).The report comes amid a storm of criticism from 12 European Member States on the EEAS’ first year performance.

Klavdija Cernilogar, CONCORD Head of Policy, said in the press release for the launch of the report that the EU foreign policy is turning a blind eye to poverty eradication as the new EEAS fails to integrate development policy in the new service. In regions such as the Sahel and the Horn of Africa, anti-terrorism and security operations have been prioritized with little consideration to long term development efforts. Catherine Ashton and her colleagues need to realize that while poverty remains, conflict and instability will always find fertile ground. One year on, there is still no clarity on how the European Commission and the EEAS will coordinate €11billion in development programming.

The CONCORD report shows that competition rather than cooperation prevails between the two institutions. The report finds that the EEAS has done little to prioritize the ‘Policy Coherence for Development’ in its programs, despite the large staff on the ground who can measure the damage being done by its policies first hand. Laura Sullivan, ActionAid’s Head of European Policy and Campaigns, said that by ignoring this ‘policy coherence for development’ problem, the EU is effectively ignoring its responsibilities on global poverty eradication. In the report CONCORD underlines five ways for the External Action Service to improve: create a arrative on EU development cooperation,roles on programming, make Policy Coherence for Development a reality, sharpen development expertise, and work with civil society in country.

Read the full report here (pdf)
Read the press release here (pdf)

For more information contact Daniel Puglisi

Information provided by Francesca Romana Minniti, CONCORD

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