From left to right : Vincent Degert, Ambassador of the European Union – Professor Vêlayoudom Marimoutou, Secretary General of the IOC, Florence Caussé-Tissier, Ambassador of France, and Mr. AndréPouillès-Duplaix, Director of the French Development Agency during of the signature on February 3 at the IOC headquarters in Ebène (Mauritius)
photo : J.Rombi
Financing agreements have been signed by representatives of the IOC (Indian Ocean Commission), France, AFD and Europe. Two major issues can be read behind this funding : regional stability and the fear of the effects that would be due to climate change.
The European Union is investing € 6.65 million from the 11th European Development Fund to better prepare for risks and better manage disaster response by building a regional early warning mechanism. For Vincent Degert : “The COVID-19 pandemic cruelly reminds us of the importance of good preparation and a good response capacity in the face of crises, which can jeopardise development gains. (…) Preparing for disaster response is a prime example of how countries in the same region can work together to tackle a common challenge. “
Asked about the future of the partnership between the European Union and the IOC, the ambassador specified that these relations will be coordinated more globally with the African Union and within the framework of a “Green deal” of which more than 25 % of planned investments have already been disbursed.
Citing the extension of Operation Atalanta * (until 2022), the Ambassador recalled how essential peace and the management of migration were in our region.
“Peace, stability and governance”
France for its part, through its financial arm the French Development Agency (AFD) is investing € 8 million in a regional project “Peace, stability and governance” commented by Florence Caussé-Tissier : ““ this project responds to the SDG 16 “Peace, justice and strong institutions” by promoting on the one hand dynamism, openness, participation and representation at several levels in decision-making, and by supporting public access to information and the protection of fundamental freedoms. “
Let us recall that France, through AFD, has been supporting the IOC since 2007 “In recent years, the total funding granted will have multiplied by five to soon reach 150 M €. The IOC Member States face common challenges on a daily basis (the Covid-19 pandemic, the effects of climate change through the intensification of cyclonic activity, the erosion of biodiversity, the subjects of political and civic stability among others) and it is important to support them through regional actions that aim to promote these regional public goods according to André Pouillès-Duplaix, director of AFD in Mauritius.
The IOC is thus positioning itself a little more as the benchmark institution for coordinating the major development axes of our region : “The IOC maintains a strong relationship with the EU and AFD, which support our collective action in line with the Global Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Climate Agreement. Peace and stability are the very foundation of all social and economic dynamics. Our region is globally a space of peace but it happens that tensions appear, that crises tend the situations with a significant impact on populations and growth. ” Prof. Vêlayoudom Marimoutou, Secretary General of the IOC, explained to the audience.
Source: Jacques Rombi
* Operation Atalanta is a military and diplomatic mission initiated by France and implemented by the European Union, within the framework of the European naval force (Eunavfor) and the Common Security and Defense Policy (CSDP), with the aim of combating insecurity in the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean.