Meeting in Tripoli, in the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, on 27 November 2010, on the eve of the Third Africa-Europe Summit, we parliamentarians representing the Pan-African and European Parliaments, invested with a supervisory role, have reviewed the progress achieved and stages completed in the implementation of the Africa-Europe Strategy since the last summit, held in Lisbon, Portugal, on 8 and 9 December 2007.
Committed to establishing a stable partnership between our two parliaments with a view to coordinating our efforts more closely to ensure the Strategy’s successful implementation. Poverty eradiction and achieving the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) within the timetable foreseen remain at the heart of the strategy.
We welcome the willingness expressed by all stakeholders to achieve the goals of the partnerships. However, we have noted that the implementation of the Strategy in some cases lacks the necessary political impetus. At the same time, its implementing structure remains complex and therefore needs to be simplified and given an executive authority. We recommend that the ministerial meeting work towards this end and take on political responsibility for the structure.
While acknowledging the efforts made to date to incorporate the parliamentary dimension into the Strategy, we consider it useful and necessary for the parliaments to be given a more important role and to be considered as forming part of the institutional structure and not as part of civil society. As representatives of the African and European peoples, we symbolise the partnership between peoples which the Strategy is intended to put in place.
Aware of the Strategy's goals and convinced that the achievement thereof is dependent on establishing appropriate resources and procedures and making them available to those responsible for this task, we consider the following measures to be essential:
- a clear mandate should be established for the joint experts' groups under the forthcoming action plan, together with priorities, timescales and expected results;
- a financing plan should be established for the Africa-Europe joint strategy, to ensure that it is more effectively funded and implemented;
- African Union and European Union Member States should contribute by including a budget line in their national budgets specifically for the Africa-Europe Strategy;
- the national parliaments of African Union and European Union Member States should be more actively involved in the monitoring and supervision of the Strategy’s application;
- the two continental parliaments should expand the consultation process by involving civil society and the public and private sectors in the implementation of the Strategy;
- the African Union bodies or structures working on the Strategy should consolidate their coordination and relations with the Pan-African Parliament in order to enable it to play its supervisory role to the full;
- the European Union should provide appropriate resources to improve the capacity of African Union bodies, with particular reference to the Pan-African Parliament and its conversion into a legislative body with budgetary powers;
- the African Union and the European Union should work together to adopt common positions at international level and joint solutions to the problems and challenges they face.
Moreover, with a view to building on the steps already taken with regard to democracy and governance in Africa and preserving achievements, we Members of the Pan-African Parliament and the European Parliament welcome the adoption by the African Union of the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance and urge all the Member States of the African Union to ratify the Charter, so as to enable it to enter into force. We believe that this instrument is the best means of ensuring that African populations are involved in the decision-making process, and of strengthening stability, consolidating peace and security and combating corruption at all levels.
The African continent is still the scene of a number of armed conflicts causing the loss of human life, forcing people to move elsewhere, destroying basic infrastructure and exacerbating underdevelopment. Practical action needs to be taken urgently in order to restore peace and security in conflict areas and persuade the warring parties to settle their disputes through dialogue and consultation. Moreover, the decolonization process in Africa merits joint support from both sides. In this connection, as parliamentarians representing the people, we support all efforts to ensure peace and security and are prepared to contribute fully to peace and security measures and respect for human rights throughout the world.
We consider that special attention should be paid to agriculture, as a sector producing essential resources, and to opening up common markets within the framework of current agreements. Its development must therefore be considered a priority and requires us to take steps to consolidate this sector, which is a source of permanent jobs and ensures food security. The Comprehensive Africa Agricultural Development Programme (CAADP) should be given the support it requires for its implementation and the achievement of its goals.
We believe that a developed and prosperous agricultural sector in Africa would make a major contribution to the eradication of poverty, which affects a large proportion of African populations, by generating jobs. The African continent has a wealth of resources and extensive arable areas. The fact that, in this 21st century, many Africans continue to suffer from poverty is therefore unacceptable. This is a challenge to us all – parliaments and governments alike – and we have a duty to work together and plan effectively to resolve this problem.
The financial crisis remains a major concern for Europe and Africa.
In this connection, we must focus our attention and efforts on developing and improving social services, in particular health and education, and providing them with substantial budget resources at national level.
We call on Executives to focus, in accordance with the MDGs, on maternal, sexual and reproductive health rights, and to work further to combat HIV/AIDS.
The integration of the African continent is also a means of contributing to people's prosperity and welfare. To this end, steps must be taken to foster and strengthen intracontinental trade, consolidate and develop infrastructure and communications, implement an effective technology exchange programme, and enhance the role and status of regional economic communities.
Climate change is currently a major concern. The Pan-African and European Parliaments call on the Executives to work closely together to establish a joint position that takes account of the interests of both continents and to take steps to help raise public awareness of the issue and put forward appropriate solutions.
Lastly, we Members of the Pan-African and European Parliaments reiterate our commitment to coordinating our efforts and consulting one another on the most effective means and procedures for combating racism, terrorism, piracy, which have become threats to world peace and security.
We are committed to creating the conditions for ending illegal immigration by creating prosperity and employment enabling potential migrants to remain in their home countries. We are also committed to limiting the harmful effects of brain drain.
We strongly approve all programmes encouraging and ensuring equality between men and women, as foreseen in the third MDG, which emphasizes the need to promote gender equality and empowering women. We also call for programmes to combat all forms of violence against human beings, particularly violence against women and children.