Towards a policy consensus: New partnership to focus on the future of Africa-Europe relations

Towards a policy consensus: New partnership to focus on the future of Africa-Europe relations

A joint press release about the recent cooperation with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Institute for Security Studies (ISS) and our Network on a series of high-level, closed doors virtual expert seminars for the AU-EU partnership.

The Imperative of Digital Infrastructure for Africa’s Future

Africa’s digital infrastructure gap is worrying, and there are few good models around the world of well-integrated, multi-country approaches to reach full and equitable connectivity.  The best model may be the European Union (EU), and there is much Africa can learn from it, but accelerated investment is a fundamental need.

Climate, Conflict and Culture in EU’s diplomacy: Which way forward?

This blog is presenting an interesting combination of  ‘’the three Cs” – Culture, Climate and Conflict – at the forefront of the EU’s diplomacy. The question however arises namely how much can the EU afford to prioritise such complex “value driven” policy agendas in a rapidly changing world with more competition and uncertainty?

COVID-19 In-depth Analysis: Continuity and Change in European Union-Africa Relations on Peace and Security

Continuity and Change in European Union-Africa Relations on Peace and Security

The European Union (EU) and the African Union (AU) maintain a long-standing partnership on peace and security which can be qualified as constructive. It is largely based on joint interests and objectives and is less contentious compared to other more challenging topics, such as migration and trade. The EU’s new seven-year budget for 2021 – 2027 introduces new ways of working which impact on how the EU will engage on peace and security in Africa. Most notable in this regard is the establishment of the European Peace Facility (EPF) which can potentially undermine the AU’s role in leading and coordinating peace and security measures on the continent. Moreover, these new developments take place against the backdrop of an overall troubled EU-AU relationship which suffers not only from the divergences in interests in key areas such as migration, trade and climate but also from the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, and global geopolitics.

Advancing the 2030 Agenda Post-Corona: What Role for the G20 Italian Presidency?

Advancing the 2030 Agenda Post-Corona: What Role for the G20 Italian Presidency?

Italy holds the G20 presidency at a crucial moment when the world is confronted with the worst global pandemic in the past century. The economic and social consequences of the COVID-19 crisis has had major impact on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the 2030 Agenda.

Programming the NDICI in times of COVID-19: Five takeaways from a recent webinar

Programming the NDICI in times of COVID-19: Five takeaways from a recent webinar

The Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument (NDICI) represents a fundamental reform for the European Union (EU)’s development policy, its neighbourhood policy and its external action more broadly. The new instrument will be implemented in a rapidly changing geopolitical context and will have to respond to unprecedented challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The 2021 ENP South Communication: A ‘renewed partnership’ but ‘old issues’ remain

The 2021 ENP South Communication: A ‘renewed partnership’ but ‘old issues’ remain

The European Commission DG NEAR and the office of the High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy released a new policy statement (‘Communication’) ‘Renewed Partnership with the Southern Neighbourhood: A New Agenda for the Mediterranean’ on 9 February 2021. The Communication was accompanied by a staff working document ‘Renewed Partnership with the Southern Neighbourhood Economic and Investment Plan for the Southern Neighbours’. The priorities outlined in the Communication and the investment Plan are to be concretised during 2021 as the new ‘Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument (NDICI), which will finance the EU’s international cooperation, is programmed during 2021. 

Putting ‘Policy Coherence for Peace’ at the Heart of the EU’s Approach to External Crises and Conflicts

Putting ‘Policy Coherence for Peace’ at the Heart of the EU’s Approach to External Crises and Conflicts

The adoption of the EU’s Multi-annual Financial Framework (MFF) 2021-2027 will bring profound changes to the set-up of the EU’s instruments for crisis prevention, conflict management and peacebuilding in fragile and conflict-affected countries, which aim to improve the EU’s ability to engage in these contexts. However, reforming the EU’s financial instruments alone is not sufficient to address key underlying challenges. What is needed is an overarching strategic framework that puts policy coherence for sustainable peace at the centre of EU crisis prevention, conflict management and peacebuilding.