The first annual meeting of the Joint Committee for Development Cooperation has been held today, chaired by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Luigi Di Maio, in the presence of Vice Minister Marina Sereni.
The Joint Committee has approved a package of initiatives worth a total of over 106 million Euros. Among these, 55 million euros of aid credits to Albania, part of the Italian pledge for the country’s reconstruction after the 2019 earthquake; 45 million euros of voluntary contributions to international organisations, including 24 million to GAVI, the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation; 16 million earmarked for UNDESA (in particular for the JPOs and Fellows programmes for young Italian officials in International Organisations) and 3 million for the organisation of the UN Summit on Food Systems (and the pre-Summit meeting to be held in Rome). Around 5 million euros have been earmarked for cooperation initiatives in Middle Eastern and African countries.
In his introductory speech, Minister Di Maio has stressed that “in the still severe context of the pandemic, Development Cooperation continues to play a strategic role in Italian foreign policy, focusing on health as a global public good and on the impact of the current crisis on the most vulnerable countries”.
He has then recalled the important multilateral events to be held in 2021, in which Italy will play a leading role: the G20 Presidency, in the context of which the Global Health Summit will be held in Rome, on 21 May, on the fight against the pandemic, and the session dedicated to Africa during the Foreign Ministers’ meeting in Matera on 29 June. Italy will also co-organise the Pre-Food System Summit at the FAO, in July, and the Italy-Africa Conference in October.