International cooperation, carrier of promises and hopes for the involved population, is often used as a political weapon instead, to reward political friends or to express disagreements with ideological opponents... Without being exhaustive, this page offers news items that illustrate recent developments in the international cooperation scene.



Council conclusions on an operational framework on Aid Effectiveness
Adopted at the 2974th External Relations Council meeting, Brussels, 17 November 2009.

The private sector and development
This report by Christian Aid examines the different parts of the private sector and the ways in which they can contribute to development. Christian Aid argues that developing country governments must be able to make the right policies, introduce the right regulations, and build the right institutions to strengthen the private sector’s contribution to development. Foreign donors must stop forcing Washington Consensus policies - deregulation, liberalisation and privatisation - onto developing countries through their private sector development strategies.

Beyond Planning: Markets and Networks for Better Aid
The political economy of aid agencies is driven by incomplete information and multiple competing objectives and confounded by principal-agent and collective-action problems. Policies to improve aid rely too much on a planning paradigm that tries to ignore, rather than change, the political economy of aid. A considered combination of market mechanisms, networked collaboration, and collective regulation would be more likely to lead to significant improvements. A working paper of the Center for Global Development.

Policy Coherence for Development - Establishing the policy framework for a whole–of–the-Union approach"
The third wave of the economic and financial crisis has reached the shores of the developing world, hitting these countries much harder than originally expected. The forecasts for the second half of 2009 and for 2010 look bleak. More than 50 million more people are projected to be in poverty in 2009."
Close interactions at the economic level have led to a situation where almost all policy decisions taken in developed countries have either direct or indirect consequences for developing countries and their capacity to combat poverty and achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The 2008 EU Research paper on MDGs identifies three categories of factors that influence progress towards the MDGs: developing countries own policies; development cooperation; and the global policy framework, including EU policies and their impact on developing countries. Acknowledging the importance of all three categories, this communication will focus on EU policies.

'The Politics of Aid: African Strategies for Dealing with Donors'
Who calls the shots in the aid encounter? In the main, it’s the donors. But surely this is now improving, thanks to new recipient-friendly aid policies? Alas, that is not the case. If anything, the dominance of donors and their entanglement in African governance are becoming more intense.

The reality of aid - 2008
The Reality of Aid Reports analyze, comment and advocate key messages relating to the performance of aid donors from a unique perspective of civil society in both donor and recipient developing countries. The 2008 issue focuses on Aid Effectiveness: Democratic Ownership and Human Rights.

More than $300 million foreign aid will flood Namibia in the next five years through the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA), a development fund governed by the United States government owned Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC). But the jury is still out on whether the grant is a blessing or a curse.

TAX JUSTICE: Putting Global Inequality on the Agenda
Global wealth inequalities need to be addressed in order to achieve lasting social, economic development in all countries. There will simply never be enough finances to provide welfare for all if the rich continue to evade taxes, and large companies shift profits out of poor countries. The authors show how we can develop new forms of international solidarity to tackle this -- and keep wealth within countries that need it.

A new report from the Oakland Institute, Voices from Africa: African Farmers & Environmentalists Speak Out Against a New Green Revolution in Africa, issues a direct challenge to Western-led plans for a genetically engineered revolution in African agriculture, particularly the recent misguided philanthropic efforts of the Gates Foundation's Alliance for a New Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), and presents African resistance and solutions rooted in first-hand knowledge of what Africans need.

'Everybody knows it doesn't work'
Despite receiving more than $1 trillion from the west over the
last half century, Africa remains in dire economic straits.
Dambisa Moyo thinks aid is to blame and should stop now.
Not everyone agrees

According to Panos Canada's Jon Tinker, it's high time we threw away our distorting North-South eyeglasses and replace it by a new paradigm that is people-based rather than state-based.

Ethiopia's parliament has passed a controversial bill imposing tight restrictions on aid agencies. The BBC reports.

Global Witness is asking companies trading in minerals from eastern Democratic Republic of Congo to ensure that any minerals they buy neither finance armed groups or military units, nor contribute to human rights abuses at any point along the supply chain. If such guarantees cannot be provided, companies should refuse to buy the minerals. Global Witness is also calling on home governments to hold to account companies registered in their country who knowingly trade in minerals benefiting the warring parties in eastern DRC or who fail to carry out careful due diligence as to the origin of their supplies.

A newly released UNCTAD report examines why trade liberalisation has not diversified Africa's exports, and has seen the whole market share fall between 1980 and 2007 from 6 to 3 per cent instead. The paper suggests the reasons for this are weak supply capacity and poor trading infrastructures. Africa needs to address structural constraints so they can be more responsive to export opportunities.

Untitled Document
Campaign for a
poverty reduction law


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(in French)

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