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Today, 8 March, the European Commission signed with Camões I.P. a EUR 18 million project to support the Portuguese speaking African countries and Timor-Leste – Angola, Cabo Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Sao Tome e Príncipe and Timor-Leste.
The PROCULTURA will promote employment in the cultural sector, focusing on the performing arts which include music, dance and theatre. It will also strengthen the technical knowledge of specialised human resources in this area and increase access of cultural products from the PALOP-TL to the regional and international markets. It will also support the creation and circulation of literary publications for children and young people, in the region.
The second project, that will be implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) – ProPALOP-TL SAI Phase II – of EUR 8 million, will support the public finance management systems of the PALOP-TL countries and strengthen the initiatives of the supreme audit institutions, as well as civil society organisations, to improve the accountability, efficiency and transparency of public finances in the 6 countries.
The European Commission's Director General for International Cooperation and Development, Stefano Manservisi, said today: "The EU is a strong partner of the PALOP-TL. The EU believes that culture has the power to build bridges between people, notably the young, reinforce mutual understanding and especially be an engine for inclusive economic growth and social development through decent job creation. Therefore, we have been developing several programmes to support the cultural area of which PROCULTURA is one concrete contribution to the realisation of this vision. The project to support reforms in the public finance sector is also very important to contribute to an effective public expense and improve the quality of public services for citizens".
This support is given through the 11th European Development Fund which has as objective to contribute to a more inclusive and sustainable growth to these countries.
The signature of the two contracts took place on the margins of the National Authorising Officers for Cooperation between the PALOP-TL and the European Union meeting in Maputo. The European Union has collaborated with the PALOP-TL since 1992 – over 25 years.