Liberia and the European Union (EU) have signed a €279 million development package under the European Union National Indicative Program (NIP) for EU 11th Development Cooperation in Liberia.
The EU cooperation program with Liberia, which covers 2014 to 2020, will seek to address key priority areas that are essential to growth and recovery from the medium to the long-term.
According to a dispatch from Brussels, Belgium, at the ceremony, which was witnessed by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberia's National Authorizing Officer and Finance and Development Planning Minister, Amara M. Konneh, signed on behalf of the Liberian Government while the European Union Commissioner for International Development, Neven Mimica signed on behalf of the EU. The event took place on the sidelines of the high-level international conference on Ebola.
EU Commissioner Mimica, in brief remarks, said the signing signifies the EU’s strong commitment to promoting stability and reconciliation as well as equitable and inclusive development in Liberia. He said the EU’s support targets important areas for sustainable development and growth and stressed the continuation of EU and Liberia’s long-term partnership.
Under the Governance Pillar, the EU cooperation will support the overall improvement of the management of the public sector and also address the ability to deliver services as well as focus on the consolidation of peace, democracy, the rule of law and security.
In the area of Energy, the program aims to improve access to sustainable and affordable electricity for the general population and for productive activities.
The program also seeks to improve the quality of education, equity and accessibility of basic education and technical and vocational education and training; agriculture sustainability, increased agriculture productivity and added value, including improved access to domestic and international markets, and developing nutrition-sensitive production systems.
The NIP represents an important step in programming of EU aid with African, Caribbean and Pacific countries through its 11th European Development Fund. The NIPs define the strategies and priorities for EU aid in each country which is done in close cooperation with the partner countries so as to ensure that they support national priorities and reflect the local context.
The policy is in line with the EU's vision for future development cooperation, which calls for resources to be targeted where they are most needed and can be most effective.