The European Commission today announced it will provide €518 million to Madagascar, as part of its development cooperation programmes to help reduce poverty in the African country covering the period 2014-2020.
"The new programme we are signing today will help tackle poverty through inclusive and sustainable growth in one of the poorest countries in the world. The European Union is fully committed to working in close cooperation with Madagascar to achieve this ambitious goal. Yet bold reforms are needed to reduce poverty to benefit the population. That's why I have encouraged the President of Madagascar to show strong leadership and effective action, which the success of our development programmes ultimately depend on." said European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, who signed today the National Indicative Programme with HE Hery Rajaonarimampianina, President of the Republic of Madagascar.
This long term development aid aims to contribute to stability and resilience by strengthening good governance, to contribute to economic growth and sustainable development through actions on infrastructure and rural development, and to improve the delivery of basic services to the population.
Madagascar is one of the poorest countries in the world, where some 92 % of the population living on less than $2 per day.
In line with the Madagascar National Development Plan, the new National Indicative Programme signed today which outlines the main priorities of the EU's development cooperation with Madagascar until 2020 focuses specifically on three sectors: governance and strengthening of public policies, infrastructures in support to economic development, and rural development. Support to civil society will also be provided.
In addition to this bilateral allocation, the EU will provide support through the regional programmes and thematic budget lines (e.g. €8 million were allocated in 2015 to help Madagascar adapt to climate change).
Madagascar experienced cyclical political crises (the latest one was in 2009-2013), and it is also highly vulnerable to natural hazards (floods, droughts and invasion of locusts).
The EU has long standing relations with Madagascar. These relations were impacted during the last political crisis. As per Council Decisions (based on article.96 of the Cotonou Agreement), the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) bilateral development cooperation to the Government was suspended, although the EU was able to provide direct support to the vulnerable population (approximately €300 million).
The political transition process was strongly supported by the international community. It was concluded by elections and the formation of a democratically elected government. In spring 2014, as a result, article 96 was lifted. This allowed resuming the official relations, and launching the programming exercise under the 11th EDF.
In 2014, the EU provided funding to support the post-crisis transition (€97 million, including budget support through a State Building Contract). This was an advance of the 11th EDF National Indicative Programme and provided an important political signal.