CTA Brussels News

Information on key ACP-EU programmes and events relevant to agriculture and rural development in ACP countries
July 2019 - No. 613


Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management (BIOPAMA)

The EU and the ACP have invested € 60 million through the 11th European Development Fund (EDF).The BIOPAMA partnership combines the protected areas and the biodiversity conservation expertise of IUCN with the scientific know how of the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission (JRC). Within IUCN as a Union, BIOPAMA brings together the Secretariat and four regional offices, the expertise of the IUCN WCPA – Capacity Development group, and many IUCN members, States and non-governmental, as beneficiaries. Regional organizations in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific also participate in the implementation of the programme, especially through the collaboration for the Observatories for protected areas and biodiversity.
The direct beneficiaries of the BIOPAMA programme are the protected area actors at the regional, national and local levels, whose efforts will continue to be supported by the provision of tools, services, capacity development and the possibility to finance actions at the site level.
BIOPAMA intervenes in three regions: 79 countries hosting 9,000 protected areas, encompassing a massive diversity of ecological, social, economic and cultural landscapes. The regions represent some of the most challenging places on Earth and host a huge share of our planet’s biodiversity. While the programme’s objectives are the same across all the regions, BIOPAMA can only succeed by tailoring them to respond to specific needs and complement countries’ efforts filling the gaps where they exist.

Featured CTA partner

Annette Houtekamer, Expert in Inclusive Insurance at Ibisa

IBISA is utilising a peer-to-peer architecture supported by blockchain and Earth Observation technology to enable affordable crop protection products and reduce costs typically incurred by traditional insurer-centric paradigms. They have a an approach of risk sharing system similar to ancestral communal practices but done at a global scale, thus creating a vast pool of loss compensation resources and minimizing correlated risks.

At the occasion of our Brussels Briefing on Opportunities of blockchain for agriculture we heard more about the model from one of their experts. Annette Houtekamer is an Expert in Inclusive Insurance at Ibisa. With a lifetime of experience in finance, insurance, reinsurance and development spanning across India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Tanzania, Burundi, Senegal and South Africa. Annette is experienced in Inclusive Insurance and integrated risk management, building local capacity and mutual networks and institutions responsive to un(der)served markets. She is skilled in Social Science, Insurance and Economy and holds an MBA.

Watch her interview here:



Strategic Events

Fifth Ministerial Meeting between the High Representative of the European Union and the Ministers in charge of Foreign Affairs of G5 Sahel

On July 9, 2019, the 5th Ministerial Meeting between the European Union and the G5 Sahel Foreign Ministers (Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Chad) was held in Ouagadougou, under the co-chairmanship of Mr. Alpha Barry, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Burkina Faso and representative of the Presidency-in-Office of G5 Sahel and Mrs. Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Vice-President of the European Commission.
Both parties reviewed the different areas of their cooperation. To this end, they expressed their deep concern at the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation in the G5 Sahel area. Both parties reaffirmed their commitment to work towards the operationalization of the Joint Force, including its policy component, and the implementation of the Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law compliance framework.
 Both parties decided to consolidate their partnership based on the following priorities:
- appropriation by the G5 Sahel countries notably through enhanced coordination by the Permanent Secretariat;
- the definition of an integrated security and development framework and the identification of priority areas on which the efforts of the parties will be focused;
- to be innovate in the implementation of aid, both in the field of support to the Joint Force and in development actions to respond quickly to the expectations of the population.
In this context and on the basis of these priorities, the European Union will support the Joint Force, including its police component, with an additional 138 million euros (138 million euros). The two parties decided to put in place a roadmap for the definition and operationalization of the integrated framework of action referred to in the previous point.
Source: EEAS, 10 July 2019


Humanitarian aid: €7 million for disaster preparedness in Southern Africa and Indian Ocean region

As natural disasters threaten the most vulnerable people in the Southern Africa and Indian Ocean region, the EU is providing €7 million in humanitarian aid to increase the capacity of communities and authorities to prepare for and respond to disasters. This aid is in addition to the approximately €17 million in EU humanitarian assistance given this year to help people hit by cyclones Idai and Kenneth in Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Malawi and Comoros, and people affected by food shortages in Zimbabwe.

Source: EC, 1 July 2019

Promoting Sustainable Development Through Aid for Trade

Over the past 40 years the ACP and the EU have promoted a unique trade and development cooperation model that inspires global North-South cooperation,” said Viwanou Gnassounou, Assistant Secretary-General of the ACP Group of States, at the ‘Aid for Trade’ Global Review 2019.
The Review took place from July 3 to 5 at the World Trade Organization (WTO) headquarters in Geneva under the theme ‘Supporting Economic Diversification and Empowerment for Inclusive, Sustainable Development through Aid for Trade’.
‘EU-ACP Trade and Development Cooperation – Revolutionizing economic diversification and empowerment through inclusive and sustainable aid for trade’ – was the topic of a side event, organized by the EU-ACP TradeCom II Programme, African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Secretariat, the EU-ACP Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) and COLEACP (An Association of Companies and Experts Committed to Sustainable Agriculture).
The discussions sought to respond to the question: How EU-ACP aid for trade cooperation can drive the sustainable development agenda and create synergies with other trade and cooperation instruments for more effective, sustainable and progressive results? It was pointed out that recent global developments have contributed to structural adaptation and improvement in their cooperation that further bridge the economic divide between developed and developing partners and lay solid foundations for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
It is intended to provide greater impetus to the ACP’s sustained export competitiveness and expansion, effective penetration into and climbing regional and global value chains, and effective negotiation and implementation of multilateral and regional trade agreements. Specific trade cooperation components focus on:
  • Supporting and strengthening regional and national regimes to support the expansion of inclusive trade and micro/macro-economic growth targeting inclusiveness, youth unemployment, and poverty reduction;
  • Enhancing the productive capacity for trade and value chain expansion, diversification and competitiveness, including through transformative processes such as value-addition;
  • Mainstreaming vulnerable sectors such as women and youth into instruments and policies that promote more equitable participation in trade and distribution of wealth;
  • Dissemination of trade and investment knowledge and cooperation instruments between the public and private sector and other actors of the civil society;
  • Harnessing the trade-related aspects of the green and digital economy; and
  • Overall promotion of sustainable development.
Wrapping up the three-day conference, Director-General Roberto Azevêdo said: “The 2019 Review has been focused on supporting economic diversification and empowerment. This is fundamental when we look at the current landscape.”

Source: Eurasia Review, 8 July 2019
EU remains Nigeria’s most important trading partner

Mr. Filippo Amato is the Counsellor – Head of Trade and Economics Section of the European Union (EU) Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS. In this interview, Mr. Amato discusses the relationship between Nigeria and Europe in terms of trade, investments and economic growth during his five years here, and more.

During your tenure as the Head of Trade and Economics Section of the EU, how much did the trade volume increase between the EU and Nigeria?
The total volume of trade between Nigeria and the EU has increased over the years: about 20 billion euros in 2016, 26 billion euros in 2017, and 34.4 billion in 2018. An important point I also would like to stress is that Nigeria has always had positive trade balance with the EU: about 2 billion euros in 2016, 5 billion euros in 2017 and 10 billion euros in 2018.

Which European country/countries does Nigeria trade with the most?
According to the 2018 figures of the National Bureau of Statistics, the top three EU countries from which Nigeria imports goods, mainly oil refined products, chemicals and machinery are the Netherlands (N1,501,640.1), France (N377,569.9) and Germany (N357,731.5), representing respectively 27.8%, 7% and 6.6% of the overall imports of Nigeria from the EU.
In terms of exports, the three top EU countries to which Nigeria exports goods are: the Netherlands (N2,051,225.5), Spain (N1,934,078.4) and France (N1,513,883.7), representing respectively 24.4%, 23.1% and 18% of Nigeria’s overall exports to the EU. Let me add that the UK accounted for 6.2% of total EU exports to Nigeria and 8.3% of total EU imports from Nigeria in 2018.
Read the full interview here

Africa-Europe Alliance: EU invests over €100 million in African economic integration

The European Commission recently adopted a set of projects in support of African economic integration. The initiatives, worth €101.5 million, focus on infrastructure, intellectual property rights and improving the investment climate in Africa.

These new projects are the first batch of 2019 actions financed by the Pan-African Programme. The bulk of the funding for 2019 (€90 million) will be for blending projects, which are part of the EU External Investment Plan (notably its Africa Investment Platform). They will support continental and cross-regional connectivity, through dedicated projects aimed at improving sustainable trans-regional transport and energy infrastructure.

This represents a stepping-stone to boost economic integration in Africa. Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, said: “Supporting an increasingly integrated African market is one of the pillars of our Africa-Europe Alliance. With these initiatives worth €100 million, the EU helps to improve key infrastructure, to promote intellectual property rights and to facilitate a conducive investment climate. These elements underpin the creation of the African Continental Free Trade Area, an ambitious project by our African partners that will boost intra-African trade with positive effects for economies across the continent”.

Source: EC, 5 July 2019
EU Trust Fund for Africa: new migration-related actions to protect vulnerable people and foster resilience of host communities in North of Africa

The European Commission has approved five new migration-related programmes in North of Africa totalling €61.5 million. These new programmes adopted under the EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa will reinforce ongoing actions to protect and assist refugees and vulnerable migrants in North of Africa especially in Libya, improve the living conditions and resilience of Libyans as well as foster economic opportunities, labour migration and mobility in the North of Africa countries.

Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn, underlined: "The events of last night killing migrants are a strong reminder of the need to pursue EU's efforts to protect them and to put an end once and for all to the Libyan detention system. The EU continues to push for the ultimate closure of detention centres and is working to provide assistance and protection to people in need. In the framework of the African Union-European Union-United Nations Task Force, we support vulnerable migrants to voluntarily return and reintegrate in their countries of origin and refugees and asylum seekers to be evacuated out of Libya in view of their resettlement. Our new programmes under the EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa will help to protect vulnerable people, stabilise communities, and reduce hardship for migrants, refugees and local people in areas most affected by migratory flows.

Source: EC, 3 July 2019
Africa-Europe Alliance: EU supports Cabo Verde business forum to promote investment and jobs

The Government of Cabo Verde is promoting the country as the ‘Mid-Atlantic Gateway to the World’s Economy’. It estimates investment opportunities for private sector initiatives and public-private partnerships are around €2 billion, distributed in seven key economic sectors, such as renewable energy, tourism, the blue economy and agribusiness. There is also significant potential for public-private partnerships in strategic sectors such as regional integration and international trade.
The plan focuses on areas that can create jobs and have a real added-value for people. This will allow African economies to grow stronger in a sustainable and inclusive way.  By using €4.5 billion in EU funds, the EU will secure ten times that amount - €44 billion – by 2020 in public and private and private investment for development. As part of the Plan, the EU is also working with governments and businesses to make their countries more attractive places to invest in.

Source: EC, 1 July 2019
Biopama launches the first call for proposals for medium grants

On 24 June 2019, BIOPAMA launched the first call for proposals for medium grants (up to € 400 000) in the frame of its "Action component", which provides funding opportunities to address protected and conserved areas, sustainable use of biodiversity and natural resource priorities for actions on the ground in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (ACP).By adopting a landscape approach, these actions will also contribute to enhancing local livelihoods through sustainable use of natural resources and ecosystem services as well as increasing resilience to the impacts of climate change.
Interested organisations can apply until 21 September 2019 at 23:59 (CET/Brussels date and time). BIOPAMA is an initiative of the ACP Group of States financed by the joint ACP-European Union (EU) 11th European Development Fund (EDF).

Source: ACP, 26 June 2019

Key resources

Aid for Trade at a Glance 2019

This edition analyses how trade can contribute to economic diversification and empowerment, with a focus on eliminating extreme poverty, particularly through the effective participation of women and youth. It shows how aid for trade can contribute to that objective by addressing supply-side capacity and trade-related infrastructure constraints, including for micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises notably in rural areas. The analysis is based on the views of 133 respondents – 88 developing countries, 35 donors, 5 providers of South-South trade-related support and 5 regional organisations – who participated in the 2019 aid-for-trade monitoring and evaluation exercise. They share the view that economic diversification is a gateway for economic empowerment, but also that empowerment is essential for economic diversification particularly when it enables youth, women and micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises to engage in international trade.


ECDPM Annual Report 2018

The report provides a bird’s eye view of the past year, starting with the most noteworthy activities and then zooming in on twelve projects. The report makes clear how the ECDPM activities tie together and how, in 2018, they contributed towards the Global Goals of zero hunger; decent work and economic growth; reduced inequalities; peace, justice, and strong institutions; and partnerships for the goals.


EU Delegations unwrapped : A practical guide for Civil Society Organisations

In the recent years, European Union Delegations (EUDs) – more than 140 worldwide and run by the European External Action Service – play a key role in designing, programming and implementing EU development cooperation programmes. They also take a leading role by coordinating with member states on the implementation of all EU assistance, both multilateral and bilateral, to boost synergy and increase the visibility of the EU. With the adoption of the European Commission (EC) Communication “The roots of democracy and sustainable development: Europe’s engagement with Civil Society in external relations” (2012), EUDs have also been requested to engage with civil society in a more strategic, structured way, and consequently to draw up country roadmaps for engagement with civil society organisations (CSOs). It is therefore important that civil society is considered a valid interlocutor in these processes, and that its views are represented in the different priorities identified by the EUD. To this end, this handbook aims to help and strengthen civil society active at the country and local levels to engage better with EUDs in the future.



EU's Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP) – biennial report to the European Parliament and Council
16 July 2019
Charlemagne Building
Brussels, Belgium
Brussels Development Briefing n. 57: “Investing in smallholder agriculture for food security and nutrition”
11 September 2019
Brussels, Belgium
European Research and Innovation Days
24-26 September 2019
Brussels, Belgium
CARIFORUM-EU Business Forum and Authentic Caribbean Trade Expo
26 Sep - 28 Sep 2019
Union Halle Frankfurt, Germany
Click here for more info
This CTA Brussels newsletter is produced weekly by the CTA Brussels Office

Publisher: Ms Isolina Boto, Manager CTA Brussels Office (
Editor: Mariana Lemos (
Contributor: Félix Ajong (
Technical support: Thierry Lewyllie (

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The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) is a joint international institution of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and the European Union (EU). CTA operates under the framework of the Cotonou Agreement and is funded by the EU.
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