Press Release – EEAS
The European Union and the NZ Government together will host the Pacific Energy Summit in Auckland from 25-27 March. The Summit is a joint initiative designed to enable Pacific countries and territories to work with development partners to take a substantive …
European Union and New Zealand Government co-host the Pacific Energy Summit 2013
The European Union and the NZ Government together will host the Pacific Energy Summit in Auckland from 25-27 March. The Summit is a joint initiative designed to enable Pacific countries and territories to work with development partners to take a substantive step towards their goals of implementing energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives, with a special focus on generation and distribution of electricity. Energy efficiency and the development of renewable and sustainable energy sources are key issues for the Pacific Island Countries, which are already facing the effects of climate change.
The Summit will include an Investment Showcase to connect development partners and the Island States with the clean tech private sector and investment banks. The event is preceded by two days in Tonga from 21-22 March to see the Tonga Energy Roadmap in action. For more information and to register please see: http://www.pacificenergysummit2013.com/
Applications for the 2014 European Union Visitors’ Programme (EUVP) are now open!
The EUVP (established in 1974) enables young, promising leaders from countries outside the European Union to gain first-hand experiences of the EU’s goals, policies, institutions and achievements. The programme also serves to increase mutual understanding between professionals from non-EU countries and their EU counterparts.
Successful applicants will have a unique chance to take part in an individual five-to-eight-day programme of meetings with EU officials at the EU institutions in Brussels, Strasbourg and /or Luxembourg. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and apply now!
For further information and the application form please visit EUVP New Zealand. The deadline for applications is 20 April 2013.
Reassessing the EU Asia Pacific Relationship in the context of the EU Crisis
Call for Papers: Annual EUSA AP Conference, 17-18 May in Macau. Deadline for submissions: 25 February 2013, successful applicants will be informed mid to end March.
The Euro-zone crisis is a perfect example of how, in an interconnected world, events within one region have effects that are felt throughout the world. Asia Pacific counties are significant exporters and importers to the Eurozone and EU. The stability of the Euro, depressed demand for manufactured goods and credit ratings have direct consequences in Asia Pacific counties. Is there more continuity or change in the EU-Asia Pacific relationship? How do different groups perceive the EU and any changes in its relationship to the region? The aim of this conference is to investigate these questions from both a European and an Asia Pacific perspective.
Applications are sought from a wide variety of fields of study to discuss these interdisciplinary topics. Presentations will be 15 minutes in length followed by 5 minutes Q&A. This conference is kindly supported by a Jean Monnet Grant from the Education and Culture Directorate General of the European Commission. Read more EUSA conference
Full work programme of the Irish Presidency of the Council of the EU released
At midnight on 1 January, Ireland took over the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU). The Irish Presidency’s work programme entitled “For Stability, Growth and Jobs” was officially launched in Dublin on 9 January 2013. The main priorities across the nine Council configurations are: (1) Securing stability: focussing on banking union, the European Semester process and the next phase of Economic and Monetary Union reforms. (2)Investing in sustainable growth and jobs: among the main tasks are a Single Market of the future, including a Digital Single Market, youth unemployment and smart and sustainable growth. (3) Europe and the world: contributing to the pursuit of peace, democracy and prosperity and prioritising bilateral trade agreements with key partners, including the United States of America. 2013 marks the 40th anniversary of Ireland’s EU membership, and this is the seventh time they have held the rotating presidency. read more
Where the European Commission’s humanitarian aid will go in 2013
The European Commission has adopted its plan for the allocation of over €661 million in humanitarian aid funding for 2013. This so-called World-Wide Decision on Humanitarian Aid will be the financial backbone of the Commission’s humanitarian aid operational strategy for 2013. The Commission will fund humanitarian interventions run by more than 200 of its partner organisations in nearly 80 countries or regions. Kristalina Georgieva, the European Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, said: “The scope and size of the Commission’s world-wide humanitarian aid decision is a sober reminder of the extent of humanitarian needs around the world. For hundreds of millions of people crises are not rare events but recurrent, seemingly unavoidable hardships. Humanitarian aid is a vital expression of our humanity towards those who suffer. As well as the basic physical needs it fulfils, I have seen how it also serves as a source of hope for people who have lost nearly everything else.” read more
Conflict in Mali on the agenda of the official Foreign Affairs Council meeting in Brussels
After an emergency meeting on the conflict in Mali in January, the Foreign Affairs meeting discussed the current situation on its official meeting last week. The Foreign Ministers unanimously expressed their gratitude and support for the French efforts in fighting terrorism in the African country. Since the special meeting two weeks ago, the EU accelerated preparation for the EU Training Mission, increased humanitarian assistance and pledged support to the African-led mission in Mali and created a clearing house to support that. The Malian government and National Assembly have responded by adopting the Roadmap for political transition. Next Tuesday, a special ministerial meeting of the support and follow-up group on Mali will be hosted. It will be co-chaired by the African Union, the UN and ECOWAS. That meeting will reinforce international cooperation, support the concrete implementation of the roadmap and follow up the international donors’ conference at which the EU announced a contribution of 50 million Euros in support of the African-led operation (AFISMA). The EU plans to shortly launching a training mission in Mali and its head, General Lecointre, has already made his first visit to the country. read more
Commissioner Piebalgs participates in the UN panel on post-2015 development agenda
EU Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs, took part in the second UN High Level Meeting on the post-Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) agenda beyond 2015 in Monrovia, Liberia, on January 30th. The meeting was co-chaired by David Cameron, UK Prime Minister, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of Liberia and Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, President of Indonesia. This meeting will focus on the lessons learnt from the implementation of the current set of MDGs and further elaborate on the principles and main elements of a post-2015 agenda. This will bring the panel one step closer to finalising the report, which is to be submitted to UN’s Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon by the end of May 2013.
Read more http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/what/millenium-development-goals/index_en.htm
Photo: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of Liberia and EU Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs
EU Commissioner Hedegaard reflects on Climate Change Conference in Doha
The EU welcomed the outcome of the Doha climate change conference which lays the basis for more ambitious international action against climate change in the short term. It paves the way for a new global climate agreement to be finalised in 2015 and enables a second period of the Kyoto Protocol to start on 1 January 2013. Although the forum did not decide on the 2015 global climate change deal, Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action, said: “In Doha, we have crossed the bridge from the old climate regime to the new system. […] What we need now is more ambition and more speed.” Before Doha, the EU presented a checklist to secure progress towards the new climate deal. One of the Union’s priorities was to make the transition away from the old climate regime, where only developed countries have the legal obligation to reduce emissions, to the new system where all countries, developed and developing alike, will for the first time make legal commitments under the new global agreement. read more
The World Bank published a risk analysis based on recent science collected by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Climate Analytics. The report underlines the urgency of taking actions to prevent further global warming. It provides an overview of scientific literature and new analyses of likely impacts and risks that would be associated with a 4° Celsius warming within this century. Read the full World Bank report online
Japan re-opens market to beef from France and the Netherlands
The European Union welcomes the lifting of the Japanese ban on imports of beef and beef products, as a first step, from two EU Member States, France and the Netherlands, from 1 February 2013. This is a very positive development, although it took longer to achieve than anticipated. The decision by Japan is an encouraging signal for the other EU Member States who wish to export beef to Japan, and whose equally high level of food safety has been internationally recognised by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). read more
New Delegations in Myanmar & United Arab Emirates
The EU is to open a Delegation in Yangon, as part of its continued engagement with Burma/Myanmar following the historic changes that have been undertaken in the country. By opening a full EU Delegation, the EU can enhance its dialogue and cooperation with national authorities and other stakeholders with a view to contributing to the country’s economic, political and social development. As well as the Delegation in Burma/Myanmar, an EU Delegation in the United Arab Emirates will also be opened, highlighting the importance both of geostrategic interests and political and economic ties with the country, as well as with the Gulf Cooperation Council as a whole. There are now 141 EU Delegations worldwide.
2013 – European Year of Citizens
The European Union has declared 2013 the European Year of Citizens. Europe’s fundamental values such as freedom, democracy and the rule of law don’t just apply to the EU member states. Each EU citizen is guaranteed individual freedoms and rights under the EU treaties. The European Year of Citizens will focus on the rights of private citizens in Europe, and is intended to remind people of these rights. The concept of EU citizenship was introduced 20 years ago in the Maastricht Treaty. Since that time, many EU citizens’ rights have become a matter of course. More information on the European Year of Citizens can be found here: http://europa.eu/citizens-2013/
2012 in pictures
The year 2012 marked a year of intensive activity by the EU’s new diplomatic service and the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security, Catherine Ashton.
Here we present a few photos that capture the year, month by month – from Nuclear talks with Iran in Baghdad to the UN Assembly week in New York – to election monitoring in Senegal. Read more read more
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