Stefano Manservisi, director-general of DEVCO and, on the left, Krysz Jurek, director of the British Council office in Brussels.
The directors of European cooperation agencies meet to define and discuss how to work to develop common international cooperation projects funded by the European Commission.
During the summit, held in Brussels, the cooperation agencies, members of the Practitioners Network, presented a joint declaration expressing a commitment to intensifying their collaboration in order to work collectively with European institutions, marking the way forward towards closer and more effective cooperation between the various European agencies.
The declaration presented is a response to the current context in which common challenges are growing, the programmes of the European Union are increasingly ambitious, and the European Commission has a more limited implementation capacity.
The International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP) is actively participating, through the Practitioner’s Network, in this review of the joint declaration with contributions and suggestions aimed at simpler and more effective implementation of European development programmes.
Declaration of the Practitioners’ Network
The joint declaration of the European agencies is underpinned by the mandate of the Council of the European Union, which, in its conclusions on 12th May 2016, urges the European Commission to promote cooperation between European agencies within the framework of Joint Implementation.
The main objective of this declaration is to reach a compromise, at the highest level of the organisations, to fostering a suitable context for facilitating joint implementation. The aim of this is to enhance the complementarity and visibility of European cooperation. The meeting was also useful for learning the difficulties that other agencies are facing first-hand in identifying common challenges, and to facilitate future collaborations.
The declaration serves as a roadmap for the agencies to discuss their own legal or financial limitations in the coming months when it comes to working jointly and to seek common agreements to overcome these limitations.
What is the Practitioners’ Network?
The Practitioners’ Network for European Development Cooperation, a platform for coordination, harmonisation and exchange between European cooperation agencies, is currently having a significant influence on the reform of two matters of maximum importance for the EU development cooperation system: the Financial Regulation (financial framework) and the review of the European Consensus on Development (political framework).
Fourteen agencies from 12 European Union countries are part of this effort, including the International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP) and the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), with the European Commission as an observer.