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Thank you. Let me start by apologising for the delay and thanking the Luxembourg Presidency for organising and hosting this informal meeting of development ministers that comes at a crucial time.
We started yesterday with the closing of the European Year for Development with a major public outreach. I believe this is particularly important because finally today, for different reasons, the European public opinion realises that development is the real investment in stability, security and peace. Also for us. Not only for our friends in the rest of the world.
We then had a session yesterday evening on COP21 and the link between policies related to development and climate change. We were connected with our French colleague from Paris, so that we exchanged views on the last hours of negotiations on the COP21. Also because climate change is one of the major issues that is always raised by our partners from all over the world. It is the major cause not only of national disasters, but also shortages in economic development, job opportunities and instabilities around the world, so it is very deeply connected with our work on development.
This morning, we started with an exchange with CONCORD, the NGOs network at the European level on development, to start working on the main topic of the meeting today: the implementation of the Agenda 2030 that was just adopted in September in New York by all Heads of State and Government -the new SDGs, our Sustainable and Development Goals. The European Union was the main actor for achieving this result of the common universal adoption of these goals. And it is going to stay the main actor for their quick, fast and coherent implementation. We started to work on this with the ministers, with the NGOs – because we believe that also in the implementation phase we will need to build partnerships and alliances with the civil society and work together on that.
Finally, but last and not least, we had a point on migration and development. This is something that is regularly on the agenda of development ministers. We discussed in particular the follow-up of the Malta summit, the establishment of the Trust Fund for Africa but also for the Middle East, in the framework ofthe Syrian conflict, to make sure that projects are starting soon and are related to our political priorities that we define together with our partners. The objective is that our decisions that were already taken can be implemented fast and in partnership with our friends in the region.
Link for the video:http://ec.europa.eu/avservices/video/player.cfm?ref=I113737
Link to the Q&A session: http://ec.europa.eu/avservices/video/player.cfm?ref=I113740