Economic Partnerships and Climate Change
By NKENDEM FORBINAKE, Cameroon Tribune, 08-12-2013
The summit of Paris made some strong recommendations on these two questions which are very dear to Africa. Peace and security issues were obviously the dominant subject for discussion at the weekend summit; but the other two themes which came under examination on Saturday also came up with ground-breaking decisions.
On economic partnerships and development, for example, the summit agreed on the mobilisation of some 15 Billion Euros in guarantee funds for Africa in the next five years. France is also bent on ensuring that trade links with the African continent are doubled by 2020.The following other decisions were taken:
. Encouraging human movements and the setting up of a France-Africa Foundation for Growth;
. Encouraging intellectual exchanges through meetings, seminars, associating public and private partners as well as organising an annual meeting of ministries responsible for the economy as well as regular business forums;
. Encouraging transparency contracts as well as social and environmental responsibility on the part of companies doing business in Africa;
. Insisting on health initiatives with the provision of some 1.08 Billion Euros in financing by the Agence française de Développement in the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in the next three years;
. Doubling France’s assistance in the area of family agriculture with some 400 million Euros in new financing.
With regard to climate change, the summit decided to create an Euro-African Alliance in 2015; a kind of binding universal agreement which will enable the parties to remain under two degrees. France also undertook to improve access to sustainable energy for all by supporting the UN Secretary General’s Sustainable Energy for All (SE4 ALL).
France will also provide some 5 Billion Euros for the Adaptation Fund agreed upon at last month’s climate meeting in Warsaw, Poland as well as accelerate its contribution to the Green Fund by including a tax on financial transactions. A pledge of one Billion Euros annually was also made for Agence française de Développement projects dealing with Green infrastructure.