EUChange – EU’s external actions architecture

Published on The Broker, by Martin Dinham, Oct. 5, 2009.

Friday’s welcome vote in Ireland means the question ‘How should the EU’s external actions architecture be designed’ will now need to be answered fairly rapidly (depending on developments in Poland and the Czech Republic) . We will all need to be ready with ideas on how how we think development can best be served in this architecture.

The UK has set out its thinking in recent months. Briefly, we think that: 

  • the EEAS provides the opportunity for a more coherent and effective approach to external action, and should have geographical desks covering the entire world;
  • development policy, and programming and implementation for developing countries (EDF and DCI instruments) should continue to be led by the Commission, under a strong Development Commissioner;
  • programming for the Neighbourhood region combines development with political objectives, so the ENPI instrument is, therefore, best managed by the EEAS;
  • the High Rep and EEAS should have a strong role in contributing to development programming through providing overall strategic direction for the EU’s relationship with third countries. Equally, the Development Commissioner should co-sign with the High Representative proposed programmes that the latter will lead on;
  • programming staff in the EU Delegations should be part of an integrated team working to the head of Delegation, but to ensure proper management of instruments, they should report on that part of their work to the Commission.

… (full text).

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