European Union External Action


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Good evening,

Today at the Foreign Affairs Council with the Ministers of Development, we discussed a very pressing topic: the issue of debt.

Many countries already facing a difficult situation, with unsustainable debt levels, suffer from the worsening effect by the COVID-19 pandemic, especially the middle-income countries that now face risks of debt distress.

The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission, Josep Borrell, spoke on 23 November by telephone to the State Councillor/Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China, Wang Yi.

EU High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell visited Bosnia and Herzegovina on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Dayton Peace Agreement.

The President of the European Council Charles Michel spoke today Monday 23 November 2020 with President-elect Joe Biden and congratulated him on his election as the 46th President of the United States and Kamala Harris as the future Vice-President.

The European Union’s eleven civilian CSDP missions are crucial to the EU’s foreign policy and crisis management response, supporting partner countries in addressing security challenges including organised crime, terrorism and hybrid threats. Two years ago, the Council agreed to significantly strengthen EU civilian crisis management through a series of practical commitments, called the Civilian CSDP Compact. Today the Security Policy Directors of the EU Member States and the EU services met online to review progress made on the Compact commitments.

Ahead of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on 25 November, the European Commission and High Representative/Vice-President, Josep Borrell, issued the following statement:

The EU will contribute €183 million to the IMF's Catastrophe Containment and Relief Trust for debt relief in 29 low-income countries, allowing them to increase their social, health and economic spending in response to the COVID-19 crisis. This contribution, announced just after the G20 Summit endorsed a Common Framework on Debt Treatments beyond Debt Service Suspension Initiative (DSSI), is fully in line with Commission President von der Leyen's proposal for a Global Recovery Initiative that links investments and debt relief to the Sustainable Development Goals.