EU Parliament OKs EUR 51 bln for 2014-20 foreign policy

Development cooperation, enlargement, neighborhood policy

11 December, 18:55

    (ANSAmed) - STRASBOURG, DECEMBER 11 - The European Parliament has approved 51.4 billion euros in funding for EU foreign policy instruments for the 2014-2020 period. Development cooperation, aid for EU enlargement and relations with neighboring partner countries are the three major areas that the aid package passed by a broad majority in the Strasbourg Assembly will focus on.

    EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fule said that the funds would make it possible to ''accompany in an effective manner'' reforms and efforts made by neighbors countries to the east that are attempting to bring their policies in line with EU standards while bolstering democratization and social and economic development in the bloc's southern neighbors.

    Some 19.662 billion euros have been allocated to the development cooperation instrument, which covers all developing countries and programs on a geographical basis in Asia, the Middle East, Latin America and South Africa. Another 15.433 billion will go to the neighborhood policy instrument, which covers 16 countries to the east and south of the EU, while Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) funds for EU membership candidates or aspiring ones (Albania, Bosnia Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey, and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) total 11.699 billion. Further funding will go towards a new partnership policy instrument (955 million), the peace and stability instrument (2.3 billion) and the one for democracy and human rights (1.3 billion). The EU's foreign policy financial package is expected to receive approval from the European Council as well shortly.

    (ANSAmed).

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