Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, is on official visit to Egypt. Between February 2019 until January 2020, Egypt is chairing the African Union.
Commissioner Mimica said: “We have high hopes for the Egyptian Chairmanship of the African Union, especially when it comes to making progress on boosting investment, strengthening the business climate and continuing the path towards Africa's continental integration. Advancing peace and security is another important point on the agenda. Under Egypt's Chairmanship, we want to take forward our cooperation to do more and better together, by focusing on concrete deliverables and advancing triangular cooperation. Delivering on the Africa-Europe Alliance and further deepening the Africa-Europe partnership should be on top of our respective agendas.“
During his visit, Commissioner Mimica is meeting President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, Foreign Minister Sameh Hassan Shoukry, and Minister of Investment and International Cooperation Sahar Nasr.
Africa-EU cooperation and Egypt's African Union Chairmanship
Commissioner Mimica's visit to Egypt is an occasion to discuss Africa-Europe partnership and related support to the African Union agenda, in particular in relation to taking forward commitments of the 5th AU-EU Summit of 2017 and building on priorities of the Egyptian Chairmanship.
The Commissioner presented concrete plans for putting into practice the new Africa-Europe Alliance for Sustainable Investment and Jobs. The Alliance was created to strengthen economic cooperation, boost investment and trade, including support to the African Continental Free Trade Area, and create jobs across Africa. The Alliance points to a number of sectors for closer economic cooperation, such as infrastructure development and space technology.
The cooperation between the EU, Egypt and Sub-Saharan Africa was also discussed in relation to addressing peace and security challenges in the Sahel and the Horn of Africa. The African Union-EU Memorandum of Understanding on Peace, Security and Governance signed in May 2018 was highlighted as a solid basis for more strategic engagement between the African Union and EU when it comes to tackling more effectively the complex threats and root causes of instability and violent conflict.
Africa-EU relations have steadily deepened and widened since the first Africa-EU Summit in Cairo in 2000. Regular Summits held every three years define the political priorities. The last Summit held in November 2017 in Abidjan agreed on four strategic priority areas for the period 2018-2020: Investing in people – education, science, technology and skills development; Strengthening resilience, peace, security and governance; Mobilising Investments for African structural sustainable transformation; Migration and mobility.
Since the Abidjan Summit, an Africa-Europe Alliance for Sustainable Investment and Jobs was launched in September 2018. Close cooperation with the African Union on implementing the Alliance has been put in place. In the area of Peace and Security, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed in May 2018. It provides an important tool to engage more strategically and systematically, on the different phases of the conflict cycle, including on conflict prevention, mediation, early warning, crisis management and peace operations.
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