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Brussels, 2 March 2010

Launch of the reconstruction phase in Haiti: Commission deploys first 100 millions euro envelope for governmental buildings, schools, roads and technical assistance

EU Development Commissioner Andris Piebalgs announced today the release of €100 millions to support recovery activities in Haiti. This amount will be used for the reconstruction of government buildings and key state infrastructures, budget support to help the government maintain essential expenditures such as the payment of salaries, rebuilding of schools and strengthening of the education system, consolidation of the main road around Port-au-Prince, enhancement of civil protection capabilities and technical assistance. These priority needs have been agreed together with the Haitian government. This first envelope will be disbursed from now until May.

“Even if the humanitarian crisis in Haiti is not over, we now have to launch the phase of reconstruction of the country. As the world's biggest donor, the EU has a special responsibility to make its action effective by dividing roles between Member States and the Commission. Today's plan leverages on Commission's expertise in budget support, infrastructures and technical assistance. It has been prepared with the Haitian government who must be in the driving seat of the reconstruction process” stated Andris Piebalgs. He also added “Member States and the Commission are currently preparing a comprehensive EU package to be presented on the 31 March in New York as the EU's contribution to Haiti's overall reconstruction strategy. It will be a test case for EU's commitment to make aid more effective. ”

The €100 million is the first tranche of more than € 300 million committed by the Commission to Haiti's, as endorsed by the Council of Ministers on 18 January. This initial recovery package is based on the results of a joint identification mission of the Commission and a number of Member States (Spain, France and Belgium) to Haiti in February. The needs and priorities have been discussed with the Haitian authorities. Most of the funds will be channeled through budget support and for:

- Infrastructures, including the construction of government buildings and other key public structures;

- Capacity building for improved governance;

- Support to social sectors, including the building of schools and ongoing education programmes in education

- Support to the civil protection mechanism, including reinforcing the firefighting capacities.

An implementation calendar has also been proposed.

On 17 February the Government of Haiti launched a Post Disaster Needs Assistance (PDNA) exercise to assess the country's long-term development needs. Experts from the EU and the European Commission are participating, together with the Government the UN, the World Bank and other partners. Their first report is expected to be published on 12 March, and their findings will inform discussion during the Haiti reconstruction conference in New York on 31 March. The PDNA results will also be used to determine the allocation of a further EU aid package of €200 million for longer-term reconstruction. This will be in addition to individual contributions from EU Member States' budgets.

For more information:

EU Delegation in Haiti:

EC Cooperation programmes with Haiti:

Website DG DEV :

MEMO including the tables: MEMO/10/56

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