Uutinen 15.2.2010

Minister Väyrynen to attend the Informal Meeting of EU Development Ministers in Spain

Press release 41/2010
15 February, 2010

Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Paavo Väyrynen will attend the Informal Meeting of EU Development Ministers in Segovia, Spain on 17–18 February. The topics for discussion at the meeting are, among others, transatlantic development cooperation, attainment of the Millennium Development Goals, the situation in Haiti and the distribution of labour among aid donors. Innovative financing mechanism and tax issues of developing countries will also be discussed.

Spain, the Presidency country, has asked Minister Väyrynen to give a presentation launching the discussion of transatlantic cooperation. The idea of a partnership for sustainable development presented by Finland a year ago has made rapid progress in a short time and gained high-level political approval at the EU–US Summit held this past November.

Dr Rajiv Shah, the new Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), will also attend the Informal Meeting of Development Ministers. Minister Väyrynen’s agenda includes a bilateral meeting with Dr Shah.

The progress made in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) set by the UN a decade ago will also be discussed at the meeting. The discussion is part of the EU’s preparation for the MDG review to take place in New York in September.

Debate on the effectiveness of development cooperation will focus on improving the division of labour among aid donors. Finland emphasises the importance of an improved division of labour and better coordination in order to enhance the effectiveness of development aid. Ensuring effectiveness and efficiency will also figure prominently in the ministers’ discussion of aid to Haiti. Meeting the need for assistance in Haiti calls for long-term commitment and reconstruction efforts by the international community, and so coordination among the central actors is important.

Additional information: Päivi Nevala, Adviser to the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, tel. +358 9 1605 6171 or mobile tel. +358 40 753 4375, and Counsellor Pirjo Suomela-Chowdhury, tel. +358 9 1605 6272