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“Development Cooperation: a reform for the future”, says Gentiloni

Renewing and strengthening the strategic role of Development Cooperation is one of the key points of the stability law, which envisages an increase in our international cooperation resources of 125 million euro in 2016, 240 million in 2017 and 369 million for 2018. The law also envisages the completion of reforms to make development cooperation fit for the future. This was the political message that emerged from the second meeting of the National Council for Development Cooperation (Italian initials CNCS), which took place today, 9 December 2015, at the Farnesina. The meeting was chaired by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Paolo Gentiloni.

“The approach to the question of migration flows cannot be limited to managing the emergencies arising from crisis situations, nor can it be limited to security issues. The migration question is one of the key issues of our times. It is a structural phenomenon with profound causes that are difficult to resolve in the short term. We need to adopt an integrated approach with the aim of finding solutions in terms of eliminating poverty and strengthening stability. And development cooperation is needed for that”. These were Minister Gentiloni’s words on opening the Council proceedings, on the linkage between migration and development.

Participants in today’s meeting included representatives of the Parliament (Senator Cociancich and the Hon. Quartapelle), and of the European Commission, the International Organisation for Migration and the office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

Minister Gentiloni gave an up-date on the implementation of the cooperation reform thus far, starting from the first session of 6 July 2015. He mentioned the appointment of Laura Frigenti as Director of the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation, in a selection procedure whose different stages were published and constantly up-dated, including on the Farnesina website. The increased resources for Development Cooperation represent “an important strategic investment for our country, which sits at the centre of a region criss-crossed by tensions and growing instability which, as the tragic events in Paris have shown, now strike at the heart of Europe’s security”.

Today’s meeting also touched on the 10 million euro pledged by Italy for the European emergency fund for Africa, which aims to tackle the causes of migration from that continent and was decided at the summit in La Valletta on 12 November 2015.