The European Union Delegation and EU Member States Embassies launched the 2015 Joint EU-Philippines Development Report on January 14, highlighting their development cooperation programs implemented over the last three years while setting out their priorities for through 2020.
Greek Ambassador Constantina Koliou, French Ambassador Gilles Garachon, Italian Ambassador Massimo Roscigno, British Ambassador Asif Ahmad, German Ambassador Thomas Ossowski, Spanish Ambassador Luis Calvo, Danish Ambassador Jan Top Christensen, Dutch Ambassador Marion Derckx, and Czech Chargé d’Affaires a.i Jan Vytopil, presented the Joint Report together with EU Ambassador Guy Ledoux.
Also present were representatives of the Austrian and Belgian Ambassadors.
In the last years the European Union and Member States have been working with the Philippine Government to reduce poverty through various program including on the rule of law, energy security, public health and peace building in Mindanao.
Looking ahead to the 2015 to 2020 period the focus will be on two key areas: (a) The rule of law and (b) Inclusive growth through sustainable energy and job creation. The new strategy will address governance and climate change which are key areas of the new global sustainable development goals which are expected to replace the MDG’s this year. The European Union will continue to direct a more than proportional amount of its assistance to Mindanao as part of its contribution to the Peace Process.
In order to finance these ambitious goals NEDA Deputy Director General Rolando Tungpalan and EU Ambassador Guy Ledoux signed a letter confirming the new seven year EU support strategy that more than doubles EU grant assistance to the Philippines from +130-million (P7-billion) to +325-million P17-billion.
EU Ambassasdor Guy Ledoux said, “The significant increase in aid has been granted in the context of the progressive improvement of governance under the current administration. Emphasis will be on achieving concrete results and maximizing the impact of the EU funding provided to the benefit of Filipinos across the country.”
The decision to more than double EU Development assistance to the Philippines follows just weeks after the granting by the EU of GSP+ status to the Philippines in line with the EU’s strategy to support poverty reduction using the tools of both aid and trade. The granting of the GSP+ and its related tariff reductions in December 2014 will create many thousands of jobs for Filipinos in the Philippines directly contributing to poverty reduction. As the largest source of foreign direct investment in the Philippines, European companies have created already sustain hundreds of thousands of jobs in the Philippines.
An electronic version of the report on European Union Philippines Development Assistance 2015 may be downloaded from the EU Delegation website: http://eeas.europa.eu/delegations/philippines.