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European Commission - Press release

The European Union announces new initiatives to increase transparency and improve coordination in aid delivery

Brussels, 30 November 2011 - Speaking at the Busan High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness (HLF4), Development Commissioner, Andris Piebalgs, will today present the European Union's new proposals to make its aid more effective: EU Joint Programming, which will involve EU donors working together on aid delivery and then dividing the work needed in the most efficient way, and an EU Transparency Guarantee, which means that EU Member states will publicly disclose all information on aid programmes so that it can be more easily accessed, shared and published.

The EU will also underline the need to focus more on how aid is delivered on the ground, and encourage partner countries to take forward new 'Country Compacts', which are flexible agreements in place to enable different development partners to better respond to countries' priorities and specific needs on the ground at the time.

Speaking from Busan, Development Commissioner, Andris Piebalgs, said: "The Busan conference comes at a crucial juncture – time is running out for us to meet the Millennium Development Goals by 2015. High impact of aid and transparency are top EU priorities. That's why I am putting forward the EU Transparency Guarantee and Joint Programming of aid; leading initiatives which are open to our partners".

"As I travel in Africa, South America or Asia, I can see how EU aid is delivering results on the ground. Yet we all have more to do. It is vital that every euro of taxpayer's money goes to where it is needed most in the most efficient way. What we decide on over the next few days will have an impact on millions of lives over the next few years. ".

Over 2000 participants are expected to attend the High Level Forum for Aid Effectiveness (HLF4) event in Busan, South Korea, between 29 November and 1st December, which follows on from previous aid effectiveness events at Paris and Accra. One of the main objectives of the event is to agree on a new and inclusive Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation - an arrangement to include partner countries as well as their development partners, including emerging economies, the private sector and civil society organisations from across the world.

High profile attendees at the HLF4 event include, UN Secretary- General, Ban Ki-moon, Korean President, Lee Myung-bak, US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton and Jordan’s Queen Rania.

The EU Joint Programming of Aid is an enhanced approach to development cooperation whereby the EU and its Member States analyse each country they work in to identify the areas most in need of support, which donor should work in which sector, and then how much money should be allocated as a result. Joint programming helps to increase impact and the results of aid, improves coordination amongst donors and increases transparency and predictability.

The EU and its Member States have long been leading donors on transparency, and several of them have implemented the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) - an innovative transparency standard which enables the publication of comparable aid data from the various donors to allow for more accurate budgeting, accounting and auditing by developing countries. In addition the Commission is working on setting up the 'TR-AID' system which will allow people across Member States and developing countries to better access, understand and use information online on how aid money is spent.

This year's UN climate change conference at Durban is taking place at the same time as the Busan Forum. The EU places importance on applying aid effectiveness principles to climate change finance in order to ensure that this finance supports partner countries' efforts in helping developing countries to cope with the effects of climate change as much as possible.

Background

The European Commission recently published its Agenda for Change Communication – a commitment to increase aid impact by concentrating on fewer sectors and focusing on those countries most in need – a prime example of how the Commission is at the forefront of making aid delivery more effective.

A recent Commission report (Aid Effectiveness: the Benefits of Going Ahead ) showed that better coordination and planning of policies of the EU and its Member States could save up to €5 bn per year.

For further details see:

MEMO/11/844 – Busan: The EU's work on aid effectiveness

For more on the Commission's work on aid effectiveness, go to:

http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/how/ensure-aid-effectiveness/busan_en.htm

Website of EuropeAid Development and Cooperation DG:

http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/index_en.htm

Website of Commissioner Piebalgs:

http://ec.europa.eu/commission_2010-2014/piebalgs/index_en.htm

Contacts :

Catherine Ray (+32 2 296 99 21)

Wojtek Talko (+32 2 297 85 51)


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