Uutinen 29.9.2008

Minister Väyrynen to participate in informal meeting of EU development ministers in Bordeaux

Press release 356/2008
26 September, 2008

Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Paavo Väyrynen will participate in the informal meeting of EU development ministers to be held in Bordeaux, France, on 29-30 September.

During the first day of the meeting, the ministers will discuss food security and the EU action to address the food crisis. The prices of agricultural products and basic food supplies have risen significantly over the past few years, which hits the poorest population groups the hardest. Finland emphasises the role of rural development and trade-enhancing co-operation in the development of the agricultural sector and rural business and industrial activity.

The ministers will also discuss the European aid architecture, focusing on how the co-operation between donors and aid instruments could be enhanced and how the financing for development could be distributed more equitably.

During the second day of the meeting, the topic of discussion will be the EU positions in the Doha Follow-up International Conference on Financing for Development to be held in November-December. Finland underscores that also in the dialogue on the financing for development sustainable development must be examined from a wide perspective. More emphasis should be placed on the development of the private sector, which is the foundation of sustainable economic development and eradication of poverty.

Additional topics of discussion during the meeting include climate change and tackling developing country needs in the view of the Poznan and Copenhagen conferences. Finland emphasises that the development and climate change issues cannot be separated from each other, but climate issues must be discussed as part of the development policy debate. The adaptation and mitigation measures to be implemented in the developing countries must be strongly linked with the development co-operation measures and national plans for reduction of poverty implemented in these countries.

The conference will also address the strengthening of the healthcare systems in developing countries and their financing, the humanitarian situation of Georgia, and the development policy priorities of the next EU Presidencies, the Czech Republic and Sweden.

Further information: Special Adviser to the Minister Ossi Martikainen, tel. +358 40 592 6769, and Counsellor Pirjo Suomela-Chowdhury, tel. +358 40 721 7159