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European Commission - Press release

Commissioner Piebalgs in Kenya to boost EU response to food insecurity in the region

Brussels, 30 April 2012 - Tomorrow, European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs, will begin a two-day visit to Kenya during which he will address the issues related to food insecurity in Kenya and in the Horn of Africa region, which is often affected by recurrent drought. The Commissioner will present an EU initiative, called "Supporting Horn of Africa Resilience (SHARE)", which will help people in the Horn of Africa to recover from the recent drought and to strengthen their ability -and that of the regional economy- to better withstand future crises.

Commissioner Piebalgs commented: This initiative aims to break the vicious cycle of crises in the region and ensure that people can better cope with future droughts. The initiative shows the EU's determination to continue the fight against hunger and avoid the suffering of millions of people living in the vulnerable regions of the Horn of Africa. The EU will strengthen its work in the areas of agriculture and food security, by making sure all parts of the chain, from production to sale, are addressed at regional level.

Other discussion topic for Commissioner Piebalgs' stay in Kenya will include the on-going reform process and the upcoming elections. He will meet with President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga, as well as Finance Minister Robinson Githae and Minister of Development of Northern Kenya and Other Arid Lands Mohammed Elmi

Before his departure, Commissioner Piebalgs said: I congratulate to the Kenyan government on the progress it has made on its reform agenda in recent years. These reforms should be continued especially in the run the run up to the upcoming elections. Only peaceful, free and fair elections can guarantee further development of the country and stability in the fragile Horn of Africa region.

The Commissioner will also discuss security in the Horn of Africa region and visit a number of EU-funded projects (for example a hospital and projects related to maternal health and drought management) in the North West of Kenya; an area which has been severely affected by the recent drought and where the EU is already active in supporting resilience and food security.

Schedule of Commissioner Piebalgs (tentative)

1 May

The Commissioner will visit the towns of Kalokol and Lodwar in Turkana County, together with Minister Mohammed Ibrahim Elmi, Ministry of State for Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands. The visit will include:

  • an EU Governance Project which trains local community members to carry out social audits on government projects, leading to improved accountability

  • a visit to Kapua dispensary, which participates in an EU funded safe motherhood project to improve access to maternal health care

  • visit to Lodwar district hospital

  • Meeting with Minister of State for Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands, Mohammed Ibrahim Elmi

2 May

  • Meeting with President Mr. Mwai Kibaki

  • Meeting with Prime Minister Mr. Raila Odinga

  • Meeting with Finance Minister Mr. Robinson Githae

  • Press conference (16h00)

For more information

MEMO/12/294 - EU development cooperation with Kenya

Website of the European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs:

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

Website of EuropeAid Development and Cooperation DG:

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

Contacts :

Catherine Ray (+32 2 296 99 21)

Wojtek Talko (+32 2 297 85 51)


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