ECDPM's Weekly Compass update

European Centre for Development Policy Management Weekly Newsletter
3 April 2015

Melissa Julian

Head of Communications

Dear <<First name>>,

This week’s Editor’s Pick gives a sneak preview of the European Report on Development (to be launched on 4 May). The focus is on combining finance and appropriate policies to enable a transformative post-2015 development agenda.

We have translated into French our two blogs on future ACP-EU relations. One looks at how the partnership will fit into the EU’s external action. The second considers how fit for purpose the ACP-EU partnership is in relation to the universal Post-2015 agenda. These blogs are part of a series that will feed into an ECDPM study (to be published this summer) to contribute to a well-informed debate on the future of ACP-EU partnership through a ‘political economy approach’ (PEA).

We also include an article on the links between peacebuilding and economic development and one on public-private partnerships for development.

ECDPM is surveying how its materials are used, to improve them in the future.  By helping us understand better how you use our products, you can help us to achieve this. Please take our survey.  Your answers will also feed into the external evaluation of  ECDPM that will take place in autumn 2015 and into our new five year ECDPM strategy. The survey will be open until 10 April. Our community is the heart of ECDPM, and your insights are truly appreciated!

Read further for more and visit The Filter for all the news collected on EU-Africa relations and international cooperation from this week.

There will be no Weekly Compass next week due to holidays. The next issue will be published on 17 April.

All the best,



Editor's Pick 

WATCH: Finance and policies for a transformative post-2015 development agenda - Countdown to the European Report on Development
The European Report on Development (ERD) is an influential and independent report that aims to stimulate debate and research on topics of major relevance for development and to enhance the European perspective in international development. The fifth edition of the ERD (ERD2015) has the theme of “Combining finance and appropriate policies to enable a transformative post-2015 development agenda”. The ERD2015 will be launched on May 4th in Brussels - watch the teaser trailer and sign up for the launch event. A preview of the emerging messages of 2015 European Report on Development was made at the OECD Global Forum for Development this week. Recently, ECDPM’s James Mackie was invited to present the emerging messages of the report to a joint seminar hosted by the EU Delegation to Japan and the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

Policy News 

Vers une action extérieure de l’UE plus cohérente : quelle place pour les pays ACP?
L’Accord de Cotonou entre l’UE et le groupe de pays Afrique, Caraïbes et Pacifique (ACP) sera révisé dans un avenir proche. Certains seront peut-être tentés de traiter l’avenir des relations ACP-UE comme une réflexion isolée, déconnectée des autres aspects de l’action extérieure de l’UE. Cependant, aborder les relations ACP-UE séparément est un choix risqué, soutiennent Jean Bossuyt et Andrew Sherriff dans ce blog de l’ECDPM. Les auteurs s’intéressent à la manière dont le partenariat se positionnera dans l’action extérieure de l’UE, en particulier par rapport aux réflexions sur la stratégie de sécurité européenne, la politique de voisinage et l’agenda post-2015. L’ECDPM vient d’entamer une nouvelle étude, qui paraîtra cet été, afin de contribuer à un débat informé sur l’avenir du partenariat ACP-UE au travers d’une « analyse d’économie politique » (AEP). Les AEP analysent l’interaction des processus politiques et économiques et leur incidence sur la formulation des politiques et des pratiques de coopération. Notre dossier « Repenser le partenariat ACP-UE » sera régulièrement mis à jour pendant toute la durée de l’étude. This blog is also available in English.

L’agenda universel post-2015: le partenariat ACP-UE répond-il encore à ses objectifs ?
Le nouvel agenda universel post 2015 aura des implications considérables, mais que cela signifie-t-il pour le partenariat ACP-UE? Telle est la question posée par Jean Bossuyt et Niels Keijzer dans ce blog de l’ECDPM. À première vue, l’Accord de Cotonou et l’agenda post-2015 ont certains principes de base en commun : « relations contractuelles », « partenariat équitable », et « gestion conjointe ». Cependant, plusieurs questions épineuses nécessitent une réponse: Un partenariat exclusivement Nord-Sud est-il compatible avec le nouvel agenda universel? Le partenariat ACP-UE est-il capable d’intégrer ce nouvel agenda mondial, qui ira plus loin que la réduction de la pauvreté ? Quel type de partenariat « au-delà de l’aide » sera réalisable? Il est par conséquent dans l’intérêt de tous les acteurs concernés d’examiner la compatibilité du nouveau « software » de l’agenda post-2015 avec le « hardware » du cadre actuel ACP-UE. This blog is also available in English.

Building prosperity and peace: integrating peacebuilding into economic development
Phil Vernon, Director of Programmes at International Alert, argues that politicians, civil servants, businesses, NGOs and international organisations all play a role in shaping the economy, and thus peace, through a combination of policy, business and investment decisions, and development programmes and projects. But most of these people and institutions pay little attention to this aspect of their role. Vernon’s paper provides recommendations which would enable economic development promoters to integrate peacebuilding into their work, and thus combine economic development, profitable business and investment, and progress towards sustainable peace.

Public-private partnerships for development: From principles to practice?
After attending recent events on the role of public-private finance and multi-stakeholder partnerships for development, ECDPM’s Sebastian Große-Puppendahl explains in his latest blog his surprise on how often complexity is set aside for the sake of driving a simple message home. For instance, he argues, all too often people refer to the private sector and the public-private partnerships, as if they are all the same and uniform when in fact there exists a great diversity of businesses and partnerships, hence the urgent need to better understand the different forms of partnerships that exist. There is a need to readily embrace the complexity and diversity of public-private partnerships and focus on how to translate broad principles into operational tools, he reflects.

Help ECDPM define its future communications products: Take our survey
ECDPM is surveying how its materials are used, to improve them in the future.  By helping us understand better how you use our products, you can help us to achieve this. Please take our survey.  Your answers will also feed into the external evaluation of ECDPM that will take place in autumn 2015 and into our new five year ECDPM strategy. The survey will be open until 10  April. Our community is the heart of ECDPM, and your insights are truly appreciated!

-The Comprehensive African Agricultural Programme (CAADP) has published its Programme of Work in Operationalising the Malabo Declaration and of its implementation strategy and roadmap.

-With just over a month before the British general election, DEVEX launches a special series asking key players in the UK international development community how they predict the outcome of the election may affect development policy and the #FutureofDfID.

-The Economist Corporate Network launched its inaugural African Business Outlook Survey with the objective of collecting data and insights about recent performance of companies operating in Africa and analysing the issues that impact growth and profitability of those operations, both overall and in different countries.

-The greatest challenges to good governance in Africa lie at the intersection of two problems - low horizontal and vertical accountability and weak constitutionalism. This latest SAIIA paper looks at judicial independence under the African Peer Review Mechanism, tracing it ‘from rhetoric to reality’.

-China will focus on “strategic economy” in its foreign policy, based on its enormous economic and financial strength and its broader diplomacy in the region and on the world stage. The European Council on Foreign Relations argues that China is beginning to come up with a grand strategy in its foreign relations.

-This UNCTAD note provides an overview of the state of play of the political process on Non-Tariff Measures (NTMs) and Regional Integration in the Southern African Development Community. It shows some distance between members of a free trade agreement and the potential greater economic benefits from reducing NTMs, while discussing potential ways forward.

-The world has made good progress in improving global livelihoods with real increases in wages for unskilled workers, better life expectancy, greater gender equality and more widespread literacy, according to this OECD report. However, a number of daunting challenges threaten to undo this progress, particularly on the demographic and environmental fronts.

-Given the current set of global crises unfolding while the UN debates the Sustainable Development Goals, it is important to keep in mind that development will be hampered unless peace can be more effectively pursued - so argues Timothy D. Sisk in his latest blog for ‘Political Violence @ a Glance’, curated by Erica Chenoweth and Barbara F. Walter.

-This latest IMF review asks how to harness trade for growth - preventing a “new mediocre” in global economy and how countries should rethink the role of trade in growth prospects and their strategies. Finally, it asks what implications this rapidly changing trade landscape have for the IMF’s work.

-For the 2014 SAIS-CARI conference on Chinese agricultural investment: 'Land Grabs' or 'Friendship Farms', this policy brief from the SAIS China-Africa Research Initiative at Johns Hopkins University is the latest in a series of policy briefs focused on Chinese agricultural investment and other engagement in Africa.

-How can the Financing for Development Conference advance country efforts to manage the wide range of development finance tools and partners needed to implement the post-2015 agenda? Read Eurodad’s recent submission to a recent discussion hosted by the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation.

-This IMF paper studies the role of government in scaling-up of investment, in particular the case of Benin. They find that the higher fiscal burden required to preserve fiscal sustainability would completely wipe out the welfare gain of higher public investments.

-This OECD report sets out a draft framework for the public governance and delivery of infrastructure and is based on OECD work in public-private partnerships, fiscal policy and governance across levels of government, regulatory policy, integrity and anti-corruption, budgeting, and public sector innovation.

-This issue of Africa in Fact turns the spotlight on a broad range of issues in public finance, ranging from fuel subsidy reform to sovereign wealth funds to corruption fatigue.

-Follow-up and review processes should include all stakeholders responsible for realising sustainable development outcomes and incorporate existing global, regional and national mechanisms according to this ODI paper on establishing a workable follow-up and review process for the Sustainable Development Goals.


Recent and upcoming events

The European Commission published a Staff Working Document entitled “Launching the EU International Cooperation and Development Results Framework”. This has been developed as part of the implementation of the commitment articulated in the 'Agenda for Change' to strengthen the capacity of the Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development to monitor and report results, enhancing accountability, transparency and visibility of EU aid. It follows on from and develops the key issues that were described in the December 2013 Staff Working Document titled ‘Paving the way for an EU Development and Cooperation Results Framework’. It translates the approaches set out in the 2013 Staff Working Document into operational terms, includes the mechanisms in support of the reporting process and details the indicators of the EU RF against which DG International Cooperation and Development will report annually as of 2015 to demonstrate how funds spent contribute to the achievement of the policy objectives.

Following a joint hearing with EU taxation Commissioner Pierre Moscovici on Monday, members of the European Parliament’s Special Tax Rulings and Economic and Monetary Affairs committees jointly debated tax issues with OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría and Director of Centre for Tax Policy Pascal Saint-Amans on Tuesday. The debate focussed, inter alia, on the fight against tax evasion and fiscal havens.

The Ministerial Statement from this week’s joint annual meetings of the African Union specialized technical committee on finance, monetary affairs, economic planning and integration and the Economic Commission for Africa conference of African ministers of finance, planning and economic development was published. It calls for harmonising national, subregional and continental development plans in the context of Agenda 2063. It also recognises the need for the appropriate sequencing of trade policy at the bilateral, regional and multilateral levels, in line with industrial policy needs and development objectives and the imperative of fast-tracking the establishment of the continental free trade area.

The AU-UNECA meeting also held a regional consultation towards the third international conference of Financing for Development. They endorsed the ‘Financing for Development - Africa’s perspectives’ document and have called upon African negotiators to use the outcomes of the regional consultations as inputs in negotiating the outcome document of the third International Conference on Financing for Development in July.

UNECA published its Economic Report on Africa 2015: Industrialising Through Trade. This Report examines and provides analysis on the critical elements of effectively fostering industrialisation and hence structural transformation based on an extensive review of experience with industrialised countries and Africa’s post-independence attempt at industrialisation. Ten country case studies were also conducted.

UNECA country profiles were also agreed aimed at helping countries tell their own development narratives. They will help countries focus their energies on macro-economic and social policies that will help them achieve structural transformation and provide a diversity of stakeholders including governments, investors, partners, academics, analysts and civil society representatives, with a high quality, alternative source of data. Five pilot profiles were presented, covering Botswana, Cameroon, Kenya, Morocco and Nigeria.

This week’s OECD Development Forum called  for ambition, action and accountability in financing for development. The Forum discussed, inter alia: monitoring the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), developing country perspectives on the post-2015 development agenda, and the role of non-state actors in implementing the SDGs.

The focal points of the g7+, including the CSO platform and the g7+ Secretariat, met this week for their first technical meeting of 2015. They discussed coordination, the implementation of the g7+ mandate and the review of its strategic priorities. The aim was to feed into a discussion on enhancing whole of government approach to the New Deal, including the role of CSO, and identifying the support needed.

The COMESA Summit final communique was published. Heads of Government welcomed progress made towards the finalisation and launching of the COMESA-EAC-SADC-Tripartite Free Trade Area Agreement and look forward to the Tripartite Summit on 10 June.

A European Commission InfoPoint lunch-time conference on creating a sustainable food future will be held on 9 April. The meeting will discuss the fact that the world is on a course to need 70% or more crops, wood and milk and meat from grazing land even as the world also needs to protect natural ecosystems and their carbon and reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions.

A European Parliament public hearing on the security challenges in the MENA region and the prospects for political stability will be held on 13 April. Watch live or a recording after.

Klaus Rudischhauser, Deputy Director-General of the European Commission’s DG DEVCO will present the roadmap to the UN SDGs summit at a meeting on 14 April.. Maryam Niamir-Fuller, Special Advisor on Post-2015 of the UNEP's Executive Director and Kitty van der Heyden, World Resources Institute, will discuss key elements of Post-2015 framework. Representatives from civil society organisations will put forward their views on the Commission Communication and discuss with the Commission and the Council Presidency.

The ACP-EU Development Finance Cooperation Committee meets on 14 April. The meeting will discuss financing the post-2015 development agenda, private financing for development, the 11th EDF and the draft agenda for the ACP-EU Development Finance Cooperation Committee (Ministers) to be held in May.

UNCTAD’s Global Commodities Forum takes place from 13-14 April. Participants will reflect on the significant shifts seen in commodities markets over the past year — especially the fall in oil prices — and discuss their implications for resource-rich developing countries, as well as for other stakeholders in the commodities value chain.

On 15-16 April, UNCTAD will hold the Multi-year Expert Meeting on Commodities and Development. The meeting will discuss recent Developments in commodity markets and policy actions to address the impact on commodity-dependent developing countries.

The second drafting session on the outcome document of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development will take place from 13-17 April.

Publisher: The Weekly Compass is produced by ECDPM with financial resources provided by our core and institutional funders: The Netherlands, Belgium, Finland, Ireland, Luxemburg, Portugal, Sweden and Switzerland.

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Melissa Julian

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