-To kick start new phase of GoL-European Union partnership
The Government of Liberia and the European Union (EU) on Monday, June 5, signed a US$88 million package to support programs here as both parties begin a new phase of partnership.
Finance and Development Planning Minister Samuel D. Tweah Monday signed on behalf of the Liberian Government, while Head of EU Delegation to Liberia Ambassador Laurent Delahousse signed for the EU at the ceremony which was held at the EU Delegation headquarters in Mamba Point.
The signing took place in the context of the 50th Anniversary of EU- Liberia relations. In 1973, the Commission of the European Economic Community established its first office in Liberia, which has since been upgraded to a full diplomatic mission, the Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Liberia.
The new phase of EU-Liberia development partnership stems from 2021 to 2025, for which a total of 191 million euros / 220 million US dollars has been earmarked.
Under the new phase of the EU-Liberia partnership, four programs have been identified for support, that are: strengthening inclusive and accountable democracy in Liberia, (about US$16,5 million).
This aspect of the partnership aims to promote a more inclusive and transparent democracy in Liberia. It will support the electoral cycle and sustain peace, enable the meaningful participation of women and inclusion of marginalised groups in political processes, and increase the participation of citizens in the decision-making process and accountability. The programme will be implemented with the National Elections Commission through the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
The program also captured support for TVET (about US31 million), support for the Agricultural sector to boost food production (US$24 million) and support for forestry and conservation for a sustainable economic development (US$16.5 million). This program aims to promote job creation and income generation through the sustainable use and conservation of natural resources such as agroforestry, fuelwood plantation, multipurpose tree nurseries, and formalisation of chainsaw millers.
"The four new programs we are signing today kick off a new phase of EU support from 2021 to 2025. There are additional four programs that will be signed next year with the EU-Liberia partnership." Amb. Delahousse added.
Finance, Development Planning Minister Tweah lauded the 50 years of partnership with the European Union, saying it has not been a waste adding that their impact is vehemently making a positivity on the growth and development in supporting the Pro-Poor Agenda for Peace and Prosperity of this government.
Minister Tweah said the challenge of Liberia is transforming the potential into reality, adding that Liberia remains step-fast in tackling those areas which need to be carefully underscored.
"We are to maximize the opportunity that exists in this area of the partnership to deliver better for the Liberian people." Tweah said.