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The European Parliament and policy coherence for development

9 November 2015 3:00 pm
9 November 2015 6:00 pm

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A recent meeting of the European Parliament’s Development Committee took place in Brussels on November 9th-10th and discussed EU trade regimes towards developing countries, the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), the EU’s Accountability Report on Financing for Development as well as climate finance in the lead-up to the Paris Climate talks (COP 21).

It also discussed the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit, education in emergencies and protracted crisis as well as migration and Human Rights.

ECDPM’s Geert Laporte was invited to give a presentation on Policy Coherence for Development in light of the EU’s recent report on the issue.

You can watch the presentation in the video below between 1:46:00 – 1:55:13


His conclusions were that “It’s all about politics and overcoming political obstacles”. Laporte argues that there is a risk of technocratic approaches, and with vested interests the coherence agenda may become extremely politicised and therefore a difficult space in which to reconcile values and interests.

Policy coherence is also about power, and with a ‘north-south’ dependency it may become difficult to measure policy coherence.

The role of the European Parliament could be to support advocates of Policy Coherence for Development to become a universal agenda at the global level and overcome the donor-recipient paradigm inherent in the current policy coherence discussions.

The Parliament could identify political momentum on the basis of solid political economy analysis in limited number of areas where concrete progress is feasible based – such as in taxation, illicit capital flows and global common challenges such as food security and natural resource management.

Civil society and other ‘knowledge brokers’ can play critical role in providing analysis – but the approach should be more political.

Find out more about our work on Policy Coherence for Development


Cross-cutting TopicsEuropean external affairsPolicy Coherence for DevelopmentEurope