EU website. On 31st May and 1st June 2010, the European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs, along with Heads of State and Government from African continent and representatives of international institutions, took part in the XXV Africa-France Summit in Nice. Whilst representing the European Commission, the Commissioner took part in debates on Africa’s role in global governance, peace and security and also climate and development policy. Commissioner Piebalgs also held a series of bilateral meetings.
European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs said: ” The Africa-France Summit is a valuable opportunity to discuss with our African partners our common challenges and define common solutions, in the framework of the broader Africa-EU Strategic Partnership. I will remind that the Commission strongly calls for a bigger role and representation of Africa on the global scene. This would help all of us to better address the challenges of governance, peace and security, and climate change. In addition, we have to ensure a better integration of the private sector whose contribution is crucial.”
EU Commissioner Piebalgs will also hold bilateral meetings with some African Heads of States, and the Chairman of the African Union in the framework of the preparation of the upcoming EU-Africa Summit in November 2010.
Africa-EU strategic partnership
The strategic partnership between Africa and the EU goes back to the first continent-to-continent Summit in Cairo 2000. The Joint Africa-EU Strategy, launched at the second Summit in Lisbon in December 2007, has strengthened the African Union (AU) as a key partner of the EU and has enabled the two continents to deepen their bilateral relations and to better work together on global issues including climate change and energy, migration, MDGs, peace and security, trade and regional integration. It has also paved the way for cooperation in new domains such as Science, Information-and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and Space.
The third Africa-EU Summit, gathering leaders from both continents, is scheduled to take place on 29-30 November 2010. Preparations include a meeting between the EU and AU Commissions on 8 June. The Summit will address the burning political and strategic issues, and provide fresh political impetus to the partnership, including through the adoption of an Action Plan for the years 2011-2013 which will build on the success of the 8 thematic Partnerships established in Lisbon (as outlined in the First Action Plan).