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Courier (English)
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Language: English
Publisher: Hegel Goutier
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    Back Matter
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    Back Cover
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Full Text


illl 1.

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Editorial Committee
Sir John Kaputin, Secretary General
Secretariat of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States
Mr Stefano Manservisi, Director General of DG Development
European Commission

Editorial staff
Director and Editor-in-chief
Hegel Goutier

Franois Misser (Deputy Editor-in-chief), Debra Percival

Editorial Assistant and Production
Joshua Massarenti

Contributed in this issue
Ruth Colette Afabe Belinga, Marie-Martine Buckens, Jean-Franois Herbecq, Pierre Gotson,
Sebastien Falletti, Sandra Federici, Andrea Marchesini Reggiani, Mirko Popovitch

Public Relations and Artistic coordination
Public Relations
Andrea Marchesini Reggiani
(Public Relations Manager and Responsible for NGOs' and experts' network)
Joan Ruiz Valero
(Responsible for Networking with EU and National Institutions)

Artistic Coordination
Sandra Federici

Graphic Conception, Layout
Orazio Metello Orsini

Contract Manager O
Claudia Rechten H
Tracey D'Afters SGH I

Suver Our priuiledged
Phyllis Galembo, Servitor Homel Dorival, standing in a sacred space,
poses with a ceremonial cup used in rituals, Soukri, Haiti 1995.
Courtesy of Phyllis Galembo (www.galembo.com) partner, the

Image from BigStockPhoto.com
@Holger Mette.
Contact C cultural centre promoting artists
The Courier from countries in Europe,
45, Rue de Trves Africa, the Caribbean and the
1040 Brussels Pacific and cultural exchanges bet-
Belgium (EU) ween communities through perfor-
info@acp-eucourier.info mance arts, music, cinema, to the
www.acp-eucourierinfo holding of conferences. It is a mee-
Tel: +32 2 2374392
Fax: +32 2 2801406 ting place for Belgians, immigrants
of diverse origins and European
Published every two months in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese officials.

For information on subscription,
go to our website www.acD-eucourier.info or contact info@acD-eucourier.info Espace Senghor
Publisher responsible Centre cultural d'Etterbeek
Hegel Goutier Brussels Belgium
Consortium espace.senghor@chello.be
GOPA-Cartermill Grand Angle Lai-momo www.senghor.be
The views expressed are those of the authors and do not represent the official view of the EC nor of Place dedicated to other privileged
the ACP countries. partners
The consortium and the editorial staff decline ail responsibility for the articles written by
external contributors.




Table of contents

Of natural or political disasters...
and other consequences of forgetfulness
Always talk to one another.
Interview with Giovanni Bersani


Pacific Islands. Climate change and vulnerability
Tuvalu, a worldwide symbol
Living in constant fear of climate change
A dynamic civil society
Tsunami on the Solomon Islands
All vulnerable: The tyranny of distance
and the ring of fire
Pacific Islands face up to global warming

EU and ACP countries seek "adaptation strategies"

European Development Days.
Tackling climate change together
A new strategic partnership
EPAs issue sets sparks
flying during Joint Assembly

Africa wants to cut its own diamonds

A day in the life of Mimi B.! iiujiii.

Uproar over "green gold"

3 Building on stability
"We've got to know
who owns the land in this country"
4 Haitian-Dominican relations and the media

g "We need irrigation, reforestation and inputs"
Credit sought for business
S 10th EDF targets roads and govemance
S Enticing tourists to an "incredible country"
Capturing the soul of Haiti: Sergine Andr
14 Romania
Romania, land of contrasts
Romania from A to Z
A new donor
Being African in Romania
White Black

20 Transylvania: The promised land for tourism
2 What future for rural tourism in Romania?
24 An all-too-rare opportunity
to tum the spotlight on African photography
Prince Claus Award 2007
Natural history in Cameroon's Museums

20 Will those faraway islands really disappear?


. .

~'"i L i ."


here are disasters and disasters. There are
those triggered by climate change and natu-
ral disasters and then there are others like
the torment into which Kenya, a model
country, was plunged at the beginning of the year.
Disasters of this type may not be predictable, but they
are aided and abetted by negligence and above all by
human nature's tendency to forget.

Our key focus in this issue of The Courier is climate
change in the Pacific. Promisingly, the message is not
completely pessimistic.Indeed, Tuvalu, a small coun-
try determined to protect itself in any and every way
against the threat of climate change whilst holding on
to its sheer joy of living, is a real lesson in optimism.

Another reason for optimism is cooperation between
the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Group and the
European Union in preventing natural disasters. The
European Development Days in Lisbon at the end of
last year saw the European Union committing itself
fully to a loan to aid developing countries in the face
of climate change challenges. A loan that will lend
much needed strength to the strategies already
adopted by the EU Council and the ACP-EU Council
of Ministers.

The new EU-Africa strategic partnership concluded in
Lisbon at the end of last year, also wrestles with vari-
ous sources of disaster. Its 20 priority actions not only
include climate change but peace and security, demo-
cratic govemance and human rights, as well as other
protective barriers against social, political and eco-
nomic disturbances. The initialling -even "geograph-
ic patchwork" and even if some were eventually con-
cluded without much celebration -of a number of eco-
nomic partnership agreements between the EU and
ACP regions or individual countries before the end

of last year, showed a realistic attitude by both sides in
protecting ACP nations from being cast off from world
trade dealings.

Then, came the crisis in Kenya; a picture postcard
country where children filled the museums and whose
Nairobi Stock Exchange offered some of the highest
returs for investors to cite just two of its distinc-
tions. Obviously, the finger of accusation has been
pointed at certain irregularities in politics and gover-
nance as the cause of the conflict. But while this could
have triggered clashes, they do not alone go to explain
the dreadful violence that has been witnessed by the
rest of the world.

The major oversight of building a workable democra-
cy in many countries has resurfaced: the tribe. In real-
ity, there is no tribal problem. The problem is simply
in forgetting the tribe. European-style democracy,
including that practised by the United States, took
account of the "tribal" element from the outset. Not
necessarily in the ethnic sense -are Hutus and Tutsis
different ethnic groups in biological terms? -but in
the sense of belonging to a group. This system provid-
ed a counterbalance to the basic democratic ethos of
"one man one vote" by creating bodies like the Senate
where the minority and majority groups carry more or
less the same weight, guaranteeing the protection of
the vital interests of the former. If not, the minority
would be forever reluctant to vote for a member of
another group, whatever the respective merits.

ACP-EU co-operation undoubtedly has the means to
reflect more deeply on these matters and to act against
other disasters, both natural and man made.

Hegel Goutier



Interview with Giovanni Bersani

Giovanni Bersani was President of the for
1976 to 1989 and subsequently Honorare t.
proponents of European integration, parting it c
the African continent. He advocates the pr f de
dialogue and peace bringing into play mor
of military intervention.

A. M. R. As a Member of the European Parliament you have been
involved in Europe Africa relations since the end of the 1960s. What
can you tell us about the origins of the Lom Treaty?

G. B. can let you in on the origins of the name. During meetings in
Mauritius in October 1974, an agreement was signed on new institu-
tional structures in a new Convention to replace Yaound II. Under it, a
new Assembly of European and ACP representatives was agreed upon,
with bigger powers than before and including the wider participation of
African countries, from 18 to 46 nations. But the problem was finding
a name for the new Treaty! Lagos and Nairobi were both in the frame,
but there was opposition from francophone countries. I invited some of
the main players of the Mauritius meetings back for discussions in
Bologna (Italy), together with the Togolese Ambassador Dagadou. At
our closing lunch, I casually came up with the suggestion of the 'Lom
Convention', in honour of Dagadou. At that time, Dagadou was the
moderator and the chair of the Committee of ACP Ambassadors. The
choice of a big country threatened the unity of the ACP group, but a
small country like Togo was not so much of a threat. At the beginning
this proposal seemed like a bit of a joke but then the idea got back to
Brussels and gathered support.
A. M. R. Since the 1990s there has been criticism of the Lom
Convention for its failure to solve the problems of poverty and under-
development. What your view?

o the point

Andrea Marchesini Reggiani,
Giovanni Bersani and Ranieri
Sabatucci during the presentation
of The Courier, Dlgation
Culturelle -Alliance Franaise,
Bologna 14th December 2007.
C Niksa Soric

G. B. We first have to take into account that the challenge was an
extremely difficult one. In 1957, 50 out of 53 African countries were
colonies or controlled territories. The independence and the liberation
movements brought non-democratic regimes to power. Between 1962
and 1989, only Botswana, Senegal and Mauritius had democratic gov-
ernments, and this characteristic has been fundamental to their pros-
perity and economic growth in comparison to the other countries
where the single-party systems, backed by one foreign power, have
prevailed. We mustn't forget that during those times, in Africa, the
Third World War was being fought between the two blocs into which
the world was then divided. The nuclear threat meant that it couldn't
be battled out in the North. It was fought out in Africa.
For the past 30 years, we have promoted the creation of parliaments
in all ACP countries, and improvements to agricultural production
have been achieved in many, notably in those where hunger and
poverty previously resulted in many deaths. We fought against
apartheid, until its abolition. From a dreadful colonial heritage, 45
years on, the African Union (AU) has its own constitution, a central
government, regional governments and a Parliament. We have to con-
sider where we started. I want to stress here that EU policy has taken
a very different course from that of the US because it is not based on
military intervention, but on using moral values and principles, on
constant mediation which is often not visible but has been decisive in
many situations.

A. M. R. So, its a success story for the "export of democracy". But
the violation of human rights is i, a problem in many of these coun-
tries. Perhaps the EU sometimes turns a blind eye to such issues?

G. B. We recognized the principle under Lom III, but the problem
was to decide who was to be responsible for looking into possible vio-
lations and subsequently deciding on sanctions. Neither the Council
of Ministers nor the Commission could take on the task. In 1984, the
Presidency of the Assembly decided to assume the role and presented
specific cases of human rights violations to the Parliamentary
In 1986, there was a difficult approval of the regulation. From that
moment human rights issues have always topped the agenda of the
ACP-EU Joint Assembly.

I remember the time when I called Siad Barre, the Somali President,
during a meeting of the Assembly. He had pronounced death warrants
for three opposition leaders. I requested respective pardons based on the
Assembly's principles. The following day as the Assembly met, he
called me to say that the death penalties had been commuted to a deci-
sion to exile the leaders.
Another difficult negotiation was one with President Menghistu of
Ethiopia, who was at the time holding the ninety year old sister of Hail
Selassi prisoner. In this case, the intervention of the Ethiopian co-
President of the Assembly was very important. The lady was allowed
exile in London.

A. M. R. How have the 50 years .i'l. Treaty of Rome been celebrated?

G. B. There have been many celebrations but discussions have been
sparse on the fact that the Treaty of Rome contained the essence of
cooperation with third countries. It was an integral aspect of the text,
Part IV. It was one ofthe most difficult and debated issues: France and
Belgium wanted to transfer to the then newly founded European
Economic Community the burden of colonial and post-colonial man-
agement. The Germans were opposed considering it "a poisoned chal-
ice". The solution was a model of "equal partnership" with colonial
countries, involving lengthy discussions where nothing could be taken
for granted and everything had to be negotiated! Back then the idea of
creating a "Fund for the development of overseas countries and terri-
tories" had already surfaced. The problem is that the level of funding
has never sufficed.

A. M. R. You are familiar with the former ACP-EU Courier... What do
you think about the new edition?

G. B. Considering the media's disregard for cooperation issues, The
Courier has the possibility and duty of spreading innovative and
different information to enhance mutual understanding between EU and
ACP countries. I wish you all the best and I urge you not to stop in front
of "the rocks that you may face during navigation" and to aim at coura-
geous information which goes beyond the purely technical to reach
readers' hearts.


/ found up

Foi.I ,.. Misser


The European Commission, together with
organise a 'high-level' regional conference
this year.

Southern African countries, wants to
on child trafficking in Maputo in June

general public concem and in particu-
lar those raised by the Southem Africa
Network Against Trafficking and
Abuse of Children (SANTAC). Patrons of SAN-
TAC include Graa Machel, widow of the for-
mer President of Mozambique, Samora Machel,
and the Nobel Peace Laureate and Anglican
Archbishop of Cape Town, Desmond Tutu.
During a SANTAC-organised conference in
Johannesburg in March 2007, the European
Commission's Director-General of Develop-
ment, Stefano Manservisi, pledged his politi-
cal support for the war against child traffick-
ing, to which the European Commissioners for
Development and Communications Si ....
Louis Michel and Margot Wallstrm, have
voiced their support.
The challenge is a considerable one. According
to the International Labour Organisation (ILO),
the International Organisation for Migration
(IOM) and UNICEF, the trafficking of children

is a phenomenon that involves several thou-
sand people in the region. Furthermore, it is
difficult to put precise figures on the scale of
the problem, primarily due to the absence of a
civil register (of births, marriages and deaths)
in countries such as Malawi. Indeed, Malawi,
along with Mozambique and Zambia, is seen as
a child 'supply' and also a transit country for
both South Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.
The causes of the trade in children (a possible
estimated global turnover of as much as US$7
billion) are numerous, although SANTAC
points to poverty and the HIV-Aids epidemic as
major reasons. These twin scourges alone have
seen a significant increase in the numbers of
orphans farmed out to foster parents. These fam-
ilies, often themselves in dire need, are easily
duped into handing over the children by crimi-
nal organizations that offer work or educational
opportunities. Many, particularly young girls,
are taken into prostitution networks or slavery.
One of the major difficulties that these coun-

tries face in controlling this phenomenon is
that they do not have the means to successful-
ly police their own national borders. Neither
have they signed all the international legal
protocols and treaties to make that happen.
Worse still, in Southem Africa there is no
regional mechanism or plan in place to prevent
or eliminate the traffic in humans and this is
why a regional response is needed. The June
conference in Maputo is seen as the first stage
of the process and should produce a declara-
tion, a strategy and a 10-year action plan. It is
expected to be followed by a conference of
sponsors organised by the Southem African
Development Community (SADC), during
which an action plan will be presented and the
European Commission and the EU Member
States will lend their financial support. The
proposed measures will then be taken forward
by drawing up programmes for judicial and
law-enforcement cooperation and the sharing
of expertise. M


Round up

Debra Percival


initial new trade


As The Courier went to press, 35 out of 78 African, Caribbean and Pacific states had
initialled European Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with the EU. Ail have previously
enjoyed preferential entry into the EU market under the Cotonou Agreement.

T he EPAs are reciprocal free trade
agreements, but whereas the EU has
agreed to open market to all ACP
goods and produce, apart from sugar
and rice subject to short transitional periods
from 1 January 2008, ACP nations will only be
required to open their markets gradually accord-
ing to negotiated phased timetables of 5 to 25
years for the most sensitive goods, and covering
80% or above of all trade. Under World Trade
Organisation (WTO) trade rules, signatories to
any free trade agreement can omit certain goods
provided that the whole amounts to, 'substan-
tially all trade.' Many ACPs have hence chosen
to opt their agricultural produce out of the EPAs.
So far, only the Caribbean has initialled an EPA
as a regional entity.2 This agreement, drawn up
with all Cariforum states, covers not only goods
but also trade in services, customs, trade facili-
tation, technical barriers to trade, sanitary and
phytosanitary measures, agriculture and fish-
eries, payment and capital movements, compe-
tition intellectual property, public procurement,
environmental and social issues, and develop-
ment funds, all of which will stimulate regional
Other ACP states to initial agreements to date
are sub-regions or one or two individual ACP
states within a region. They have opted for
'goods-only' agreements with a commitment to
continue negotiations on other aspects of the
agreement in drawing up full EPAs by the end
of 2008. Most, but not ail, are middle income
countries.They felt more of an urgency to initial
due to the expiry of the WTO waiver for
Cotonou's trade agreement on 31 December
2007. The alternative would have been to face
tariffs under the Generalised System of
Preferences (GSP).
Only a handful of ACP countries are now in
this position, including Gabon, the Republic of


Congo, Nigeria and a group of Pacific
Nations; the Cook Islands, Tonga, Marshall
Islands, Niue, Micronesia, Palau and Nauru.
EU trade officials indicate that whereas
Congo and Gabon have voiced interest in an
EPA, Nigeria has declined to negotiate an
EPA at this stage. They add that due to the
low level of EU trade with the Pacific, this
region will not suffer as many losses from
GSP implementation.
"The ACP calls on the EU to ensure that all
measures are taken to guarantee the continua-
tion of trade on the same terms so that the eco-
nomic operators remain in the market and the
welfare and wellbeing of the citizens of ACP
states are not jeopardised," reads a recent
statement from the Brussels ACP Secretariat.
It adds that some of the 'interim agreements'
had been initialled under pressure and that
these should be revisited as full agreements
are drawn up during 2008.
Many ACP Least Developed Countries (LDCs)
are still undecided about EPAs. Senegal's
President, Abdoulaye Wade, has indicated that
his country is not ready for free trade. LDCs
can still enjoy duty and quota free exports to
the EU market under the EU's 'Everything but
Arms Initiative' drawn up in 2001.
But an EU Trade Directorate statement contin-
ues to stress the benefits of full EPAs: "They
bring the opportunity to support the progres-
sive integration of the ACP into the interna-
tional economy and to make sure that the
unparalleled ACP access to EU markets brings
real trade growth and broad-based economic
development; in short, the opportunity to
deliver what Cotonou has not been able to."

1 There are a total of 79 ACP states but South Africa
has a bi-lateral trade agreement with the EU and does
not to become part of an EPA.
2 See end of article for Cariforum members. M

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Round up

Marie-Martine Buckens

RCP ministers of health



In the face of the many challenges posed by health development in the ACP States
and regions, ACP health ministers decided to increase their cooperation when they
met for the first time on 25-26 October, 2007 in Brussels.

to reaffirm the importance of intra-
ACP dialogue in the framework of
the Georgetown Agreement -and
more particularly within the ACP-EU partner-
ship -by placing health questions at the heart
of their countries' development programmes.
Under this plan, priority will be given to com-
bating transmissible diseases such as HIV,
AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, particularly
through the exchange of experience and best
practice. The ministers also pledged to pro-
mote medical care services and treatment by
strengthening current health systems, specifi-
cally for non-transmissible diseases, neglected
tropical diseases and illnesses resulting from
violence or trauma.

A further concern of ACP health ministers is
the continuing migration to developing coun-
tries (especially the EU) of highly qualified
health professionals. In an attempt to reverse
this trend ministers "expressed their determi-
nation" to put into place concrete strategies to
"train, recruit and retain local health profes-
sionals". Following on from this, the ACP
health ministers decided to promote partner-
ships with pharmaceutical firms to improve
affordable access to patented medicines, as
well as, raising funds for research and devel-
opment for new medicines or diagnostic
methods. M




Climate change and uulnerability

By Hegel Goutier

Reports from Tuvalu, the Solomon Islands and Fiji

T he Pacific is without a doubt one of
the world's most vulnerable regions
when it cores to risk of disaster due
to climate change, particularly seve-
ral of the low-lying coral islands. Indeed, one
of them, Tuvalu, has become a symbol of this
threat. An ability to survive when challenged

by nature is common to other small volcanic
islands lying along the "Ring of Fire". It
encompasses nations like the Solomon Islands
which suffered the ravages of a tsunami trigge-
red by an earthquake last April, which left
dozens dead and tens of thousands homeless.
Not surprisingly, the populations of these

threatened islands are angry at the reluctance
of some rich nations, to reduce emissions held
to be largely responsible for the pollution at
the origin of climate change. An attitude des-
cribed graphically by one politician from
Tuvalu, as a "creeping terrorism" now threate-
ning his country. M

The wide of the main Tuvalu Island
in the atoll of Funafuti.
SHegel Goutier

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DOSS er Climate Pacific




Mr. Lotoala Metia
Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Industries

> Ongoing measures
to protect the environment

We have conservation areas, one on this island
and two on the other islands. The idea is to
conserve those areas. And we are also trying to
promote an awareness programme so that peo-
ple will try to keep the islands clean. Plastic
and tins have to be put in a designated area, to
be taken away so they don't litter the islands.
We are also trying to seek assistance from the
Global Environment Facility (GEF) to help
our attempt to address the erosion on our
islands in Tuvalu.

> ambitious project

As for the burrow pits*, there was a project
funded by SOPAC (Pacific Islands Applied
Geoscience Commission) to dredge sand from
the lagoon and to fill in the burrow pits but this
project wasn't successful because of the envi-
ronmental impact on the sides of the lagoon. For
your information, the govemment is trying to
put in place a concept paper to seek donor assis-
tance to build an artificial island somewhere in
the lagoon. If this project gets off the ground,
we will perhaps use the opportunity, with the
assistance of countries that helped with the orig-
inal project by using sand, to bury the burrow
pits. It is very challenging for us but I do believe
that with a well-coordinated concept, we can
convince donors to assist us in this project.

> Ouerpopulation

It is becoming a problem, not a serious prob-
lem so far, but we must address the different

levels of development between the islands and
the capital so that we can stop urbanisation and
more people coming here. We are trying to
upgrade the other islands so they have the
same facilities and the same kind of develop-
ment projects to attract extra-funding.We are
looking at ways and means of addressing the
overpopulation we have in Funafuti.

> Overpopulation
and traditional culture

In the case of Funafuti, we can say we have
some small problems but in the other islands,
this is not the case. Culture and customs still
remain intact. Overpopulation and land prob-
lems do not affect everyday life and the culture
of Tuvalu. And as far as security is concerned,
we still have safe lands in Funafuti although
overcrowding is becoming a problem. We
have to address the waste management prob-
lem too.

> Stay anyway?

That's the general consensus at the moment. If
we move, we will lose our identity and our
sovereignty. So we try to protect our islands as
much as we can so that we can stay here. But
if worst comes to worst, contacts have been
made with Australia and New Zealand to see if
they can accommodate Tuvalu.
Thank you for the timely opportunity to put
Europeans in the picture. We really have a
chance to tell the world that although we are
small in size and isolated, we are not doing
badly compared with some big islands in the
region. It is very important for the government

and people of Tuvalu to move forward, to try
to live within our resources and means, and to
consolidate financial reserves and invest in
projects that are viable and have economic
benefits for the people. Above all we want to
maintain the concept of good governance
which is a big problem for many countries in
the world.
* Holes dug during the World War II where refuse was
dumped. H.G. M

At g ime liIse-.land

i.ter, land erosion, b. j4inSg!-


Climate Pacific DoSSier

Id dynamic


Annie Homasi is Executive Director of the Tuvalu Association of NGOs (TANGO) and
was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in recognition of her unstinting
support for the communities of Tuvalu and the South Pacific. She gives a brief outline
of the work of her organisation.

T ANGO has 47 organisation mem-
bers. This membership is country-
wide and includes various kinds of
organizations. Tango is the umbrella
organisation. There are Health NGOs, econo-
mic empowerment groups and humanitarian
groups like the Red Cross, churches and many
others. It is a truly broad representation of
civil society.
We are working closely with the government
on climate change issues. Our government
has been flagging these issues in internation-
al arenas, also at regional levels. So as NGOs
we formed the coalition. We also work with
the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) based in
Fiji and with the Department of the
Environment. We have held regional civil
society forums. We looked at issues of
regional governance, health and gender and
made recommendations to governments.
Through these fora we prioritise what we
want to do and draw up action plans. We also
work on media awareness. In areas where
islands are being eroded, we have projects
where we assist the community to plant tra-
ditionally grown trees and, for example, to
avoid the loss of coconut trees, which also
provide us with a livelihood.
We want the population of Tuvalu to help
itself. Some aspects of climate change are
beyond our control. We cannot control it,
apart from being representatives who partic-
ipate in the international arenas where we
can voice our concerns. Instead of just being
reliant, being told what to do, we also need
to do something ourselves.


Countries like the United States of America
and even Australia', one of our neighbours, are
not so sympathetic towards the issue. They
still have to ratify the Kyoto Protocol, the
instrument which really highlights these
issues. New Zealand is sympathetic. We have
a migration scheme with New Zealand but

Australia is not opening its doors to us. We
work more closely with New Zealand's civil
society. For instance, in an upcoming meeting
in Wellington we will discuss logistical prepa-
rations for hosting Tuvalu citizens.
1 Interview carried out before the change of govern-
ment in Australia H.G. M

*l! L ~ a** /:a


L'i.k i II



on the Solomon Islands

On 2 April 2007 at 7:40 am, a tsu-
nami ravaged the coastal zones
of Western and Choiseul
Provinces of the Solomon
Islands. Caused by an earthquake registering
8.1 on the Richter scale, its epicentre was just
45 km from the small fishing village and resort
of Gizo (population 5,000), on Gizo Island (in
the Western Province). Gizo is 205 km from
Chirovanga, in Choiseul Province, the second
most severely hit area, and 345 km from the
capital Honiara, on the Island of Guadalcanal.
Due to its proximity to the earthquake's epi-
centre, Gizo had no advance warning, but
luckily the waves hit during daytime and,
moreover, at a height of three metres they were
lower and so less powerful than those of the
Indian Ocean tsunami in December 2004.
Nevertheless, they left dozens dead and thou-
sands homeless, in Gizo in particular. Other
places hit were the Naro and Taro Islands and,
to a lesser extent, Vella La Vella,
Kolombangana, New Georgia, and Simbo in
the Western Province.

Loss in terms of human lives would have been
a great deal more serious if the people in these
areas had not benefited from projects to
increase awareness developed following the
Indian Ocean tsunami. "We were lucky it hap-
pened during the day and the people noticed
that the sea had receded.
That was a sign that something was not right
and most people moved to higher ground",
explained former Prime Minister Manasseh
Sogavare, who was still in office when The
Courier visit in November 2007.
On the volcanic island of Simbo, about 30
kilometres from Gizo Island, the sea penetrat-
ed 200 metres inland, releasing the sulphur
from the crater of an underwater volcano. The
tsunami was followed by 25 aftershocks that
terrified the population who remained at the
very top of the island's high ground longer
than was necessary, for fear that another tsuna-
mi might strike.
The flooding of the village church caused the
death of the priest who was ordaining three

> Destruction of marine resources

According to the report by the Secretariat of
the Pacific Community (SPC), the tsunami
brought about the destruction of marine
resources, both natural and at local aquacul-
ture centres. This had a definite impact on the
coastal communities as the aquaculture sector
includes seafood, cultured pearls and aquari-
um fish, and most of the fish farms around
Gizo were completely devastated.
After meeting with fish farmers, the SPC's
plans included arrangements to help them
relaunch activities on the basis of stocks
obtained from another island in the province,
while, in the short term, supplying them with
seafood so they could maintain their commer-
cial activities. Among the hardest hit villages
were Itana on Gizo Island (where lives were
also lost), Rarumana and in Sagheragi where
major stocks of ornamental fish were about to
be transported to Honiara when the tsunami
hit. In addition, reported the SPC, the local
branch of the World Fish Center and the Gizo



Climate Pacific DOSSer

sub-regional centre of the CoPSPSI
(Commercialisation of Seaweed Production in
the Solomon Islands) had to considerably
reduce their activities. As part of the recovery
process, a ban on catches was introduced to
help reconstitute stocks of hundreds of fish
varieties, affecting local populations for whom
they are a source of revenue.

> The Coral Triangle

The damage caused to the underwater envi-
ronment off Choiseul Island is still being
assessed, but experts seem certain it is signif-
icant. This is one of the world's richest areas
in terms of the biodiversity of corals (almost
500 varieties) and reef fish (over 1,000
species), as the Solomon Islands are part of
the so-called Coral Triangle together with
Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Timor
Leste and Papua New Guinea. Damage to the
coral is expected to have a knock-on effect on
the underwater biology.

> Deforestation and climate change

Today, in the Solomon Islands 70% of state
revenue comes from taxes levied on timber
exports and the sale of logging licences. But
this exploitation of the tropical forest is
making the environment very fragile indeed.
Logging is particularly intense in Western
Province, the area hardest hit by the tsunami,
and generally accepted forecasts predict that
the forests here will disappear within no more
than five years. Logging licences have already
been issued for the limited forest cover that
remains and logging companies are continu-
ing to increase the rate of felling. This despite
the fact that present logging rates are already
three times what is considered to be sustain-
able. Already before the tsunami, Marovo
lagoon in Western Province, the world's
longest, regarded by experts as perhaps the
most beautiful in the world, was in serious
danger due to advanced deforestation on the
main island. Presently there are almost no fish
or shellfish. Worse still, a growing number of
logging companies are working on sloping
terrain, bringing the risk of erosion to coastal
areas and accentuating the potential effects of
rising sea levels.
William Atu, Director of the Honiara Office's
Project "The Nature Conservancy"
www.nature.org, explained to The Courier
how the deposits caused by erosion in a deep
lagoon, as found in many locations on the
Solomon Islands, can destroy the corals and
have a knock-on effect on marine life.


.....- C. ...

The damage caused by the tsunami to the
corals and marine life in the provinces of
Isabel and Choiseul is the subject of a more
precise evaluation to be published by the
organisation, but Atu believes it is imperative,
if only to protect the environment, for the
government to legislate on the felling of the
forests. Unfortunately, the government is
either not doing this or is failing to implement

existing laws, as too many people in the
province are backed by the logging companies
and public and private interests in the timber
trade are very important in the country.
Fishing practices are equally unsustainable
says Atu, with catches by the country's biggest
commercial fishery, Solomon Taiyo Ltd, down
by 20% since 1993.
H.G. M

Extract: Interuiew with former Prime minister

lanasseh Sogauare

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DOSS~ I Climate Pacific


The tyranny of distance

and the RI1G OF FlRE

T he Pacific Islands are one of the
regions of the world most likely to
be affected by climate change. This
is due to a number of factors inclu-
ding their small size, their remoteness (the so-
called i. !.iii,. of distance"), their geological
structure (coral islands often barely above sea
level) and their location on the fault lines of tec-
tonic plates, making them prone to earthquakes
and tsunamis (The famous Pacific Ring of Fire
reaches all the way to the Americas, Japan and
right down to New Zealand). Adding to the pro-
blem, their resources are often managed in a
way that is unsustainable and nearly all are in a
situation similar to, or scarcely less enviable
than, Tuvalu or the Solomon Islands. There are
others under threat also.
Kiribati is 87 metres above-sea level at its
highest point, but many of its islands are coral
reefs covered by between two and three metres
of sand, without rivers or any other source of
drinking water. Worse still, some of the Kiribati
Islands, and Banaba in particular, have become
even more fragile by phosphate mining by the

British Phosphate Commission, while in the
Lines Islands nuclear testing by the United
Kingdom and the United States during the colo-
nial period has had serious effects. Tarawa
Island (population 70,000) has the same prob-
lems as Tuvalu even though it is larger. To illus-
trate the issue, a recent report by the Secretariat
of the Pacific Regional Environment
Programme (SPREP)' confirmed that two unin-
habited Kiribati islets, Tebua Tarawa and
Abanuea, disappeared forever beneath the
waves in 1999.
The Marshall Islands include the coastlines of
19 eroded atolls. To protect them, as with
Kiribati, the local population is resorting to des-
perate measures including depositing all kinds
of heavy and bulky objects to serve as sea
defences. These include trucks, old cars and
other machinery that they then cover with
stones to make a barrier.
To better illustrate the problem, the Marshall
Islands and Kiribati already have their first
ecological refugees on the small raised
island of Niue.

Papua New Guinea has rivers as wide as the
Amazon, despite flowing over relatively short
distances. On 19 September 1994 an explo-
sion of several cones of the Rabaul Volcano
largely destroyed the town that bears its name.
Now some of the neighboring islands are
also threatened with disappearance. This is
particularly true of the Carteret Islands (with
a population of around 2,000) where the
locals are constantly rebuilding protective
dykes and desperately trying to get the man-
groves to grow. Now the decision has been
taken to organise their relocation in small
groups to the Bougainville Islands, four hours
away sailing.
Nauru, once extremely rich due to the phos-
phate mines, has been devastated and ren-
dered fragile by 50 years of over-exploitation
of minerals that are now exhausted.

1 Set up in 1974 by the South Pacific Commission, the
SPREP has the mission of helping the region's countries
to protect the environment and to practice sustainable
H.G. M

The 14 ACP countries of the Pacific:

: I' 2 clan. 1 i'.'j inhal:l.ir.-:l j nd 2
l I:.e 1is 18 2-2 knr.
t rir.n ial .. t r 1 2i.,. .. k'n
p,:,[l) la :,i-i r4U 2t.,5 i,2liu l I

26 itoll 1 m l',al:.ir,:l

rerritori il %v. -riFi r.i; i. ..ici krim
p,:,piilari,:',r &4 44cU i2 .,.

erritori al. s 2978000 F.........
P0Pul4$4iw'uj 21 pffrclll......- m:-cipal islands and 7o h-
.. .. bouring island 2 85 km
NAURU teiritoral ,.jaer' 1 2 unu km
1 -emergd ci,,l liland 24 km po[pulation 1i9 9jii andii a.lmc,t
rtrritnrin.l .*2.atr ) :2 l in u km 10u,u00 In.iny abroad (2u.,ru .i

popula.io,:', 1 2,Su '2Qu.0 '..

1 -mCrijd ci':ir.-Il ~!l.lnj 259 kim ;
[-_ ,:,i[i il ..i tcr ."i.i i.Uii.iU kmn
p.:.p'ul.i[i.',n 1 i 8'i 2",.-n)

T.eli. large island, and about 70
inh.-laiterd small islands: 12.189
rtrrit>crial vaters 680,uOu km';
p.pulald,:,n 12.19n (2000)"" .. ;iiii

: .. .............. iiiiiiiiii iiiiiiiiii
": ..... ....... ....:....

6 lari e ilan d 2ri small islndc
and hLindredr of isil.s-
28,446 .. ...... :.. :-...: -
.lreit-l1al walers 1,63 ,uciiu km
poi),u i)ifon 41 o 2u."i C'2oi"i.ui

Climate Pacific Dossier



Coastlines eroded, brackish groundwater and the first "climate" refugees on the move:
global warming is already a harsh reality for many Pacific Islanders. As a result, pri-
ority has been given to programmes supported by the EU that enable those affect-
ed to adapt to new climatic conditions.

She developing countries
of the Pacific Islands are
responsible for just
0".03% of the world's car-
bon dioxide emissions. Yet these countries
are expected to be among the earliest and
hardest hit by the effects of climate change
over the next two centuries." That was the
conclusion reached back in 2001 by the
International Panel on Climate Change
(IPCC), a group charged by the United
Nations to assist countries affiliated to the
International Convention on the scientific
aspects of climate change.
By last year (2007), the IPCC's report was
more specific. It stated: "On small islands,
the deterioration in coastal conditions is
expected to, inter alia, affect local resources
like fishing and also reduce the value of these
destinations for tourism. Rising sea-levels are
expected to increase flooding, storm surge,
erosion and other coastal issues. And this
will, in turn, threaten vital infrastructure,
towns and villages and facilities that support
the livelihood of island communities.
Furthermore, climate change will reduce
water resources on many small islands, (espe-
cially in the Caribbean and Pacific), to the
point where they are insufficient to meet
demand during low rainfall periods."

> Climate refugees

Tiny rocks thrown up and dispersed in the
ocean by volcanic activity, most Pacific
Islands are coral reefs that scarcely rise above
sea level. Indeed, many actually lie below sea
level like the Republic of Kiribati that consists
of three archipelagos, 32 atolls and one isolat-
ed island. The highest point on Kiribati is
Banaba, at just 81 metres. Similarly, Tuvalu,


an island nation in Polynesia, has eight atolls
and its highest point lies a mere 4.5 metres
above sea level. Half of its 11,363 inhabitants
occupy land less than 3 metres high.
Climate change makes high tides -up to 3
metres above the normal level -increasingly
common, making Tuvalu the first country in
the world where people have had to abandon
their land to escape flooding. Kiribati and
Vanuatu are also having to rehouse popula-
tions affected by coastal erosion and rising sea
levels. According to a UN report, this forced
migration "implies an urgent need for coordi-
nated plans, at regional and international level,

to rehouse the threatened communities and to
put into place a series of political, legal and
financial measures."
In the face of these unstoppable rises in sea
levels (as well as an increased number of hur-
ricanes*) the European Commission has creat-
ed the ACP-EU Natural Disaster Facility.
[There are other funds earmarked for the same
cause.]. Indeed, Asterio Takesu, Director of
the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional
Environment Programme (SPREP), reports
that the EU has already allocated 200M to
assist with adapting to climate change and
E 150M to drawing national action plans.

w ;-~

~C -i



DOSSer IClimate Pacific

The SPREP is an intergovermental organisa-
tion responsible for promoting cooperation,
supporting efforts to protect and improve the
Pacific Island environment and encouraging-
sustainable development. The SPREP's 25
member states include the four developed coun-
tries with direct interests in the region (France,
New Zealand, Australia and the United States)
and the 21 island nations and territories of the
Pacific. They comprise the Federated States of
Micronesia, Fiji, Guam, Cook Islands, Northern
Marianne Islands, Marshall Islands, Salomon
Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, New Caledonia,
P:il:i-, Pp:iil Ne--- iiiic.i Fricnich P,-.ln.ci.
niil.h '.i A I. I I..III .! llh'. l T,,l., l..i T,, ..
Tir .,1ii \.1l1ll.llll \\.d.l.,, .md Flllelll.,

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!h.iii ..I IltlC .h li t,, lt*t.l l l illt' H I t' lilh l"
'li. l u ii i l i lu.iI' ii i.' i 'ii !!. .1 i i l '. I h i
,,! .' |ls. 111 Ihlu' ,. l.J l!.' ll l l l.' , U l 'l l .H I ; ll'.l, ,

whether global temperatures will continue to
rise. Ronneberg's concern is that, although
coral reefs and island ecosystems can adapt
naturally within certain limits, nobody yet
knows what happens when these limits are
quickly reached.
One example of this is the mangroves -a pre-
cious ecosystem that is also of great economic
value. According to a study financed by the
United Nations Environment Programme
(UNEP) ("Pacific Island Mangroves in a
Changing Climate and Rising Sea" -2006),
almost 13% of the Pacific mangroves are in
dintccr ,-,f dinipperitin "--ith th,-,c ,-,n thc

HIi.C 1 iK ii 1 *u0i! l E '.l l ii 111.11 iD i.

l\\ i.. i n .I !I. Rc i .i Fi !i i c
M.ill .r.i. ilhli { .I i,! HC u '.I!, I..i l i F .ii i.

1. iii h .l !,,' .i ll d. III i .I' I bi !l., l i r i n li

Management Plans with integrated ecosystem-
based plans for each island archipelago. The
results and recommendations stemming from
this study are contributing to the development
of these new place-based Fishery Ecosystem
Plans." M.M.B. M

(*) including Hurricane Val that devastated the island of
Samoa in 2001, leaving 13 dead and causing damage
estimated at 230% of the GDP

Destructions caused by the tsunami
in Choiseul Province. Robert Iroga





T he ACP's Pacific Island nations
will not be alone in bearing the
brunt of climate change. Island sta-
tes in Africa and the Caribbean are
also included in the countries set to be at high
risk and are already suffering some of the
consequences. Recognising this, the
European Commission's acknowledgment of
the responsibilities of the industrialized coun-
tries, led to a decision back in 2003 to assist
developing countries in successfully meeting
the climate change challenge. Since 2004, the
EU Council of Ministers has adopted a cli-
mate change strategy (with an action plan for

nn4'c nn, l i h.,lIi !-i.i ii., ii..E 'JE ll. |\K|. .
*, il ll.litiII 11 r IIC. il. 'F r r i ii..i.
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li ,i i.i I i i' l iN i 1 Ii {. l -i t 11 111.. 1, t I
. i l1 i l iii. d --ll ll ii i, I i I. .nll" |i .lt i ,I
II.' l ,i. 1 *.' lh ,.l h 'I h.i.' l 'I .1' l 'J-. 1 L '
!,.ll,..l 't I u lslul-'I,..Jl,...L I!,.. ii!"!. i',,..' !, ,J s,,l! -

the Kyoto Protocol is due to draw to a close.
Last November in Lisbon, European
Commissioner for Development, Louis Michel,
called for a "global" loan to enable developing
countries to address climate change issues.
"Let's come up with a creative way to design
this global loan which would allow us the
resources to deal with these climate issues",
suggested Michel. Adding that, "If we don't
drive this forward through strong political
decisions to get immediate results, we will
find ourselves in the same place 15 years from
now." The Commissioner explained that the
loan, which could be managed by international
i, ,i liiii ,,,s ,,I 1 .l h ,11 .11 r II l .t.l .,,.I
i ii| Il I I il' Jit tlt I !" |itt I *iII il I it*

> need for a global alliance

F.i.ll l 't .I l **: '...l i.' .I ..I IIi I.Uh d FII. l,
E li C il iiL i! ..i1 4 ..i1 i!! .. Hi .. t. F'-E lit

U r'-E l l i i -.i i A- iIhI!. il N c.il, ici.

in Kigali, called for the launch of a "time-
bound comprehensive strategy to mainstream
disaster risk reduction, disaster preparedness
and climate change strategies" into national
development plans, EU development policy
and humanitarian aid. The ACP and EU coun-
tries are also being urged to set specific tar-
gets for renewable energies, with these at the
centre of cooperation programmes.
During the EDD celebration in Lisbon,
Bernard Petit, Deputy Director General at the
European Commission's Directorate-General
for Development, acknowledged that the cur-
rent flow of financial aid for adaptation strate-

i.'l i. ii~ !.ij .11 IE i h ,!,i,I FII L..i|-I .i-

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l interaction


Sebastien Falletti

Tackling climate


hall of the Lisbon International
Exhibition Centre, NGO staffers,
diplomats, African farmers and
Heads of State happily mingled in an atmos-
phere similar to a university campus. This
unlikely gathering -a potentially explosive
cocktail met for the second European
Development Days (EDD) event in Lisbon,
7-9 November 2007. Following the first
pilot-project held in Brussels in 2006, this
initiative -the brainchild of European
Commissioner for Development, Louis

Michel -gathered momentum in the
Portuguese capital where a key issue was on
the agenda -the impact of climate change on
"If we fail to integrate climate change into
our development policies right now, the ben-
efit of all the investment we have made will
be lost," stated the Commissioner, setting a
sober tone at the opening session of the event
that was attended by Jos Socrates, the
Portuguese Prime Minister in charge of the
EU Presidency and whose presence marked
the Council's first involvement in the EDD.

This call for a responsible approach tured
into a cry for help when the President of the
Maldives, Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, high-
lighted how global warming was threatening
the very survival of his archipelago due to the
threat of rising sea levels. He made a solemn
appeal to developed and developing countries
alike to commit themselves to compulsory
targets to reduce carbon emissions.
On the eve of the much-anticipated interna-
tional conference on climate change held in
Bali in December, the EDD had provided an
ideal opportunity for the EU to show solidar-

European Development Days
_ , Wiil limtrl Cha.ing.e DEvlopWiftil


ity with poorer countries and to increase pres-
sure on other partners more reluctant to enter
into negotiations. "Those who have con-
tributed least to the causes of climate change
are the most badly affected by it. I am think-
ing of the small island states and the African
countries, in particular those in the Sahel
region. It is important that their voice is heard
in Washington, Beijing and New Delhi," said
Jos Manuel Barroso, the President of the
European Commission. This appeal was
upheld by the star guest at the EDD 2007,
Kofi Annan, who used all his authority to
remind the rich countries of their responsibil-
ities. "We can't afford to fail. We need a post-
Kyoto agreement and that must start today,
not tomorrow," insisted the former Secretary-
General of the UN.

> nGO village

Rather than a political platform, the EDD is
first and foremost an opportunity for debate
and for those working in the sector to meet the
public, who were invited to visit the "NGO vil-
lage" and take part in discussions. In the hall of
the International Exhibition Centre, 650 Lisbon
residents of all ages mingled with important
figures working on the theme of climate
change and from NGOs from North and South.
Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the United
Nations Framework Convention on Climate
Change met with representatives of Climate
Action Network and Action Aid International.
With over 2,100 participants, "Lisbon this
week is where Davos meets Porto Alegre," said
Jos Manuel Barroso enthusiastically.


Climate change was discussed from all angles
at a series of roundtables, with a local
approach taking priority. The ACP countries
were not forgotten, with a debate held specif-
ically on the consequences of global warming
for their farmers. "It has been worthwhile
coming. It's an opportunity to exchange
know-how, to make contacts and hopefully to
find funding for our projects," said Samuel, a
farmer from Ghana. That is also exactly what
the EDD is all about, an opportunity for those
working in the development sector to meet,
exchange views and do business.
"It's the place to be in the sector, especially
for finding partners. It's an opportunity to do
business," said a representative from
Grenade, a media production company spe-
cialising in documentaries on developing
countries. The stands of Radio France
International and France 5 underlined just
how important development is to the media.
The EDD also provide a great opportunity for
students interested in the aid sector to seek out
opportunities for their first jobs.

> Showcase

The event was also used by countries to show-
case their efforts to help poorer countries. All
Member States of the EU with the exception of
Bulgaria erected exhibition stands on the banks
of the Tagus. There was even one from Cuba.
The Member States that joined the EU in May
2004 were there and could not be distinguished
from the "old" states. "We believe that we are
achieving great things in terms of development
and it's important to show it," said a represen-

tative at the Czech Republic stand. In the
streets of the village, some stands fitted with
state-of-the-art flat screen displays, were
impressively designed, although they often
belonged to states that have not always been
the most generous in terms of development aid.
But the sheer number of initiatives did not
eclipse the main message of EDD 2007 -the
urgency of helping the poorest countries to
fight against climate change. "Some parts of
Africa will be hit by extreme climatic events
such as floods and storms, not at the end of the
century, but in our lifetime," predicted Kemal
Dervis, administrator of the United Nations
Development Programme. "It is the small peo-
ple who are going to suffer most from climate
change," said Mamadou Cissokho, President
of the Network of Farmers' Organisations and
Producers in West Africa.
Louis Michel was soon turning thoughts into
action proposing, during the closing session, a
"global loan" to help the poor countries tackle
climate change. The Commissioner said: "If
we don't drive this forward through strong
political decisions to get immediate results, we
will find ourselves in the same place fifteen
years from now." This was a challenge laid
down to the decision-makers of Europe and
beyond. It was also a reminder that the EDD
event is a way for the EU -the largest contrib-
utor globally -to influence a development
agenda still largely determined by Washington.
The 3rd European Development Days event
will take place in France in November 2008,
probably in Strasbourg, where the much await-
ed issue will be the promotion of the role of the
regions in development. M

Interaction EU-AFRICA

l new strategic


A Joint Strategy and a IstAction Plan 2008-2010, designed to launch the new
strategic partnership between the EU and Africa, were the key results of the second
EU-Africa Summit, held in Lisbon, on 8-9 December 2007. This Summit resulted in
no-holds-barred, forthright debates, with a clear will to turn the page on a colonial
past and to jointly tackle the challenges of the future.

S even years after the first EU-
Africa Summit in Cairo and
the failure to hold a second
meeting in 2003, due to a
clash over whether an invitation to
attend or not should be extended to
Zimbabwe's President Robert
Mugabe, the Lisbon Summit launched
the new strategic partnership between
the two continents. This new relation-
ship and the new Joint Africa-EU
Strategy will be implemented through
a first Action Plan (2008-2010) with
eight specific EU-Africa partnerships,
covering more than 20 priority actions
in areas such as peace and security,
democratic goverance and human
rights, trade and regional integration,
the Millennium Development Goals
(MDGs), energy, climate change,
migration, mobility and employment,
science, information society and
space. The initial results will be
reviewed at the next Summit, sched-
uled to take place in Africa in 2010.

> action plan

The 70-plus government leaders from
the two continents undertook to
ensure that the African Peace and
Security Architecture becomes fully
operational, while creating the
required structure for the foreseen

funding of African peace-keeping
activities. In the coming months,
Somalia will provide an opportunity
for this commitment to be tested out
on the ground.
The partnership is also due to cover
the promotion of the African Peer
Review Mechanism and support for
the African Charter on Democracy,
Elections and Governance, while
stepping up cooperation on cultural
goods. The action plan also focuses on
trade, regional integration and meas-
ures to strengthen Africa's ability to
establish standards and quality con-
trols and see the launch of an ambi-
tious EU-Africa partnership on infra-
structure that has been earmarked a
5.6 billion package. Other parts of
the Action Plan include accelerating
the progress towards the Millennium
Development Goals (MDGs), and
improving common energy security
and energy access. Another key objec-
tive is to develop a common policy-
making agenda for addressing the
implications of climate change. Also
featured are migration, mobility and
employment where emphasis will be
put on the implementation of the
declaration of the Tripoli Conference
on Migration and Development and
the EU-Africa Plan of Action on
Trafficking of Human Beings. In




EU-AFRICA I neractlon

addition, the Action Plan also focuses on sup-
port for the development of an information
society in Africa and on making special efforts
to build scientific capability.
Within the broader EU-Africa context, and to
implement the agreed priorities, the European
Commission and 31 ACP States from sub-
Saharan Africa in Lisbon, jointly signed
cooperation programmes known as Country
Strategy Papers for the period 2008-2013,
valued in excess of 8 billion. Similar agree-
ments will be signed with other countries in
the coming weeks to bring the EU's commit-
ment through the 10th European
Development Fund to Sub-Saharan Africa
countries to between 1l1 and 12 billion
over 2008-2013. This figure does not include
additional funding for contingencies, regio-
nal aid, European Investment Bank (EIB)
financing and the separate cooperation pro-
gramme with South Africa, the North African
countries and other agreements, such as
trade-related assistance. On top of these
agreements, separate cooperation programmes
have been concluded with North African coun-
tries as well as loans from the EIB.

> "Indispensable Afliance"

In the words of the Commissioner for
Development, Louis Michel, the Joint
Sl!.ii.. the Action Plan and the individual
agreements all seek to forge an "indispensable
alliance" between the two continents, jointly
addressing the challenges of the future and
transcending the different views that may have
been expressed during the Lisbon Summit. It
was a Summit that lived up to all its promises
in terms of straight-talking, open discussion
and relegating the one-sided donor-recipient
relationship of the past to history.
An example was when Germany's Chancellor,
Angela Merkel, took the opportunity to remind
President Robert Mugabe about the universal
scope of values such as human rights. He
reacted to this by lambasting the "arrogance"
of Germany and other countries that criticised
him. Later, a call by Libya's President
Muamar Gaddafi for compensation for colo-
nial misdeeds was met by a refusal from Louis
Michel, who spoke of the huge amount of
development aid Europe had allocated in
recent decades to the region. Seeking to unite
both sides, the President of the African Union
Commission, Alpha Omar Konar, urged the
leaders from both continents to "bury defini-
tively the colonial past".
And now, despite these forthright statements,
Euro-Libyan relations have broken new
ground with the European Council's decision


of 14 December to open negotiations to con-
cluding a cooperation agreement with Tripoli.
Neither did the two sides shy away from sen-
sitive issues, such as migration. An issue
where Europe is conceded about an influx of
illegal immigrants and Africa is anxious to
stem the brain drain, but where both sides
want to seize the opportunities offered by cir-
cular migration, employment opportunities
and job creation.
The spotlight was also turned on the prospect
of World Trade Organisation (WTO) -com-
patible trade agreements -known as
Economic Partnership Agreements: EPAs.
During 2008, these are expected to replace
non-reciprocal trade preferences from which
ACP States have so far benefitted under the
Cotonou Agreement's trade clauses.
Senegal's President Abdoulaye Wade
expressed his opinion that Africa was not
ready to create a free trade area with Europe.
Two European leaders sympathised to some
extent with this view. Irish Prime Minister
Bertie Ahern said "more time" had to be given
to the negotiations, whereas President Nicolas
Sarkozy of France added his acknowledge-
ment of the vulnerability of some ACP coun-
tries. Yet, other European officials, stress that
such views do not reflect the position of the
EU, which has given a mandate to the
European Commission to negotiate the EPAs
with the ACP countries.

Nonetheless, the East African Community,
several Souther African and Indian Ocean
states, Cte d'Ivoire and Ghana have all con-
cluded interim trade-in-goods agreements with
the European Commission. The institution's
President, Jos Manuel Barroso, pledged to
hold consultations with the leaders of the four
African regions before launching a new round
of talks next February to finalise comprehen-
sive EPAs with all sub-Saharan countries.
Such deals will also cover trade in services,
investments, intellectual property and the
opening up of public procurement to outside
competition. F.M. M

Jos Manuel Barroso during the EU-Africa Summit
in Lisbon (8th -9th December 2007). EC

Jos Manuel Barroso and Alpha Oumar Konar,
Chairperson of the African Union in Lisbon. EC

Interaction ACP-EU

Rid for each country

The amounts earmarked for the national indica-
tive programmes for the 31 States that have
signed cooperation strategy documents with
the EU are listed below.

(A and B envelops)
Burkina Faso
Sao Tom and Principe
Sierra Leone

(Euro million)

EPI issue sets

during Joint

NB: Further allocations plus regional support and
European Investment Bank funding may be awarded
on top of these amounts to cover contingencies.

Source: European Commission's Directorate-General
for Development.

Of the 22.682 billion allocated
under the 10th EDF (2008-
2013), 21.966 billion will go to
ACP countries, 286M to Overseas
Countries and Territories (OCTs) and
430M to the Commission to organise
programming and implementation of
the EDF. The overall amount for the ACP
countries includes 1 7.766 billion to the
national and regional indicative pro-
grammes, 2.700 billion to intra-ACP
and intra-regional cooperation and
1.500 billion to Investment Facilities.
The EDF will focus more on regional pro-
grammes to underpin implementation of
the European Partnership Agreements
(EPAs) and also "incentive amounts" for
good governance.M

fLY Iss



i; I [--

hmce is no plan B! The plan cnEpritses WTOl
ST iiil.'" Louis Michel said firmly in tle char-
gedJ jiInii'lphere of the Serena Hotel confe-
T iece LLTIrT ni the he.iilt of Rv. jnda's capital,
K i-.ili .* h.ii i'. l c i ii p.i ,li. l. 'i aria.lr t.lr i n it I.'U onlinents
. i.. .i i.'lllhitJ ThI Euiiit' peiie. i ('ii iiiin r in r tor De'eliup erit
.iii hlu., iii .,ipp.11 it ili he EL. uit'n>ii t P.liini-rhip A rc, iii'ement.
iEP'A i .- !ih hi! Eli iE .1, Liil ii 1ii L lJii Je Ii ilh lthL ACP
.l ili uItsI. L [,, th IivL, I \\i rIl> Tr.uuJL ( >r,'.ii',I.ilI i", i \\ FTi Ii r'tijIIi.L -
nilii ti Inil, j.. il|l EPA'., c f .. !I lic k1 .. l il. itI ii: EI. -\C P 14"
i N .!il .i ll .ilii .i I ll''.! i ilip l. i < i I i i I i .iLt I liiii 1l i
lhi cci, !IEP'
.1 l1 c i l. 1 *1Lii i .! 1 i l i i L i.)c iil i.n i .i ll in. l clu I' li i \\ Ti 1
Ini il i Li l F i..' i i AI .lu L Ii .iil : i l i : ii .l i '.1 .1 I .1 11 .11 l. I L I
MEPs, the ACP MPs took the opportunity to drive home their
concerns, not only to the Commission, which is leading the nego-
tiations, but also to the Council, thanks to the presence of Joao
Cravinho, the Portuguese Cooperation Minister, whose country
then held the EU Presidency.



Interaction ACP-EU

> Kigali Declaration

Finally, in the wake of several days of debates
and behind-the-scenes negotiations, a tangible
outcome was achieved with the adoption of a
Kigtili Declaration that underlines the ACP
countries' concern about the Commission,
which had been threatening to impose a
Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) that
would provide a much less generous EU mar-
ket access to countries that failed to sign the
EPAs in time. The Kigali Declaration states
that this system "would threaten the welfare
and livelihoods of millions of workers in ACP
States", and recalls the EU's undertaking in
the revised Cotonou Agreement. This specifies
that no ACP country should be left less well
off at the end of any negotiations. However,
after further pressure was applied by the
- -

Boyce Sebetela from Botswana angrily. His
statement was greeted with thunderous
applause from the audience. Socialist MEP,
Alain Hutchinson added, "This is what can
only be called blackmail!"
Despite this flood of criticism, Commissioner
Louis Michel did not back down. He re-
emphasised his faith in the EPA, describing it
as a "development tool" and sought to reassure
the Assembly that the liberalisation of trade
would be a gradual process backed up by a sig-
nificant level of European financial support.
"This is not crude liberalisation!", Michel
pointed out, going on to refer to the failure of
the trade preferences system that was launched
several decades before. His belief is that it is
high time for the ACP countries to embrace
economic openness, using economic growth in
Asia as a model.

Activity commercial, Bamako 2007.
Afrique in visu /Baphste de Ville d'Avray

Christian Democrat and Liberal MEPs, the
declaration included a reference to the need to
comply with WTO requirements.
At the moment when the Commission's nego-
tiators were seeking to conclude WTO com-
patible free trade agreements by 31 December
2008, the parliamentarians hit out at what they
termed the "pressures" and the "dogmatic and
dictatorial" stance adopted by the EU's execu-
tive arm. "Just as in the good old days of the
colonies, we have been asked to be on our best
behaviour and agree to sign in Brussels!" said

> China's monopoly

The subject of Asia and its emerging powers
like China and India, now taking up strong
positions in Africa, sparked off yet another
spirited debate in Kigali, this time between
MEPs and ACP MPs. The ACP parliamentari-
ans wouldn't accept any criticism of China
made in a foreign investment report adopted
by the Assembly, much to the dismay of its co-
author Astrid Lulling, an MEP from
Luxembourg. She asserted that, "China is

monopolising the continent's natural resources
and raw materials. This does not help the
development process along but benefits
Chinese companies. China's aid does more
harm than good." This very direct criticism
displeased African MPs, backed by the JPA's
Co-President, Radembino Coniquet, and
added to by a representative of the Democratic
Republic of the Congo (DRC), who said,
"Each country is entitled to develop its rela-
tions with anyone it chooses".
It was later pointed out that the ACP States did
not need to be taught any lessons by Europe,
whose companies prefer to relocate to the
Middle Kingdom (China) rather than Africa.
But these clashes revealed just how explosive
these issues are and how much work still has
to be done by the EU in its efforts to forge a
'three-sided' dialogue with China and the
African continent.
The Assembly managed to come together again
to put over its concem at the deteriorating situ-
ation in East Congo, where continuing clashes
between the Congolese army and General
Laurent N'Kunda's rebel forces have displaced
350,000 people in the last 12 months. In an
emergency resolution, the Assembly called for
the mobilisation of the international communi-
ty and neighboring countries. "Congo is the
trigger of Africa," wared a DRC MP. German
MEP Jtrgen Schroeder believed that "the sta-
bility of the entire region is under threat owing
to this crisis, involving the rape of women, the
murder of children, as well as violence and pil-
laging for ethnic reasons." Sadly, the
Assembly's warning was tragically borne out a
few days later when fighting intensified around
the city of Goma, close to the Rwandan border.
Finally, the Assembly provided the opportuni-
ty for a wake-up call on an issue that may be
less dramatic but still has major implications
for the ACP countries: the delay in ratifying
the revised Cotonou Agreement. This delay is
now jeopardising the release of funds from the
101 European Development Fund, 2008-2013.
The Co-Presidents, Glenys Kinnock and
Radembino Coniquet, urged national MPs to
take action to guarantee that the agreement is
ratified on time so that European aid can be
released. The 27 EU Member States and two-
thirds of the ACP Group of States must ratify
the pact before the Commission can draw
upon the EDF's 22.6 billion worth of financ-
ing. Kinnock stressed how serious the situa-
tion was, warning that if the ratification
process is not completed, funding for projects
and budget aid would not be forthcoming. She
hoped that this issue would be settled during
the JPA's next meeting in Slovenia in March.


IL -

81 F_

1111 1J

iIr.1 TriE L



up the base of its strength on the global market
-Botswana, South Africa and Namibia -share
the same strategic objective and the renewal of
its joint-venture agreements with these States
is at stake.

> 8 new oligopoly
An African supply oligopoly is being formed
to deal with the mass of the world's traders and
cutters. Its position will grow even stronger
from 2008 as demand will outstrip supply and
the gap will continue to grow, according to the
forecasts of the sector's other giant, Rio Tinto
Diamonds, which admits that beneficiation is
ilci. ii.ilc E c i !L i l iI D e Bl'i!. i 1.,IIII ._L

black tt. iI i.h Llhp. 'L', Iilh 1l iii N.iilhhlJ.i
another: .i cc' ich l clc Dc RiFcci .ii .I ilic
Namib'., D i.hi. .In.l Ti..li. .'hp.'' '. INDTI. I
guaran'cc, LL iii! i,; I. I i l.I.I l !. -iiii l! i
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16 cutt'r. il.iil. !li, [ I[ is' .' i" I i' iNi, [.l
over thi' I .'L i I . .i l ic c.l.liI .ii.ii a .1
quarter r ii i iii il h I @. l.| 1 I lll I
U S$2 "ul!!,..i l TIlu- .. ,l i.il.ii .1.' i-
tage ol ilic i. i 11.11i i i li il. d .iL
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ing the! i !h l n -h n 'n' l! !.!'.i
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ed by !i. .' .i i l1.i ii i *l .l ti l II
double il iii I c l i i'. l II i.i !!, ,h .i l i l
nine m i!!',iii. .i u .1.I !j i C'.|iL ,I ,i ,l 1i I _i
billion i, 21iii i
De Beci. ilic. e .lt !c .n.ii. t i!a!tl ma !
uncut (l!nh. ilid. h. J i,, 0 h. ,ii.. I si l !,!!,
the trend. The three countries that still make

- 1

to invest some US$2.6 billion in new projects,
particularly in South Africa, Botswana,
Namibia and Tanzania, there will still be a sig-
nificant gap between supply and demand. And
yet another heavyweight in the global market,
Alrosa of Russia, has its president, Sergey
Vybomov, estimating that global demand for
uncut diamonds will reach US$20 billion by
2020, while supply will only amount to US$9
billion at current production rates. As a result
of that, production rates are set to increase.
But, despite all these demands, expectations
and changes, Gareth Penny, managing director
of De Beers believes that beneficiation can
, Il i hCi ., i l i. I i l t 1' il .. lI lI l. l

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Th.- I I- I pa es 27 .I u 28 ih.' i.- N h.- l '. "
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1 11 :i:zr

94& or

Indeed, there are very few playwrights or professional
actors involved in the art of storytelling who haven't
heard of this Haitian artist.
B.i!iilijlii. has succeeded in transforming an art you could also call it
traditional folklore into an experimental theatrical experience of a very
high standard. In doing this, she has travelled all over the globe receiving
numerous awards and honours for her breakthrough work that borders on
the magical. Her focus is on storytelling from every possible angle. She
writes, she directs and she does this through a deep understanding of
music, and sociology.
Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mrite, France. (Crr. .. de l'Ordre des
Arts et des Lettres, France. Becker d'Or 3me Festival de la
Francophonie (1989). Prix Arletty de l'Universalit de la Langue
Franaise (1992). These are just a small sample of the awards that have
been showered upon her during her career, not to mention her roles chair-
ing juries and other honours.
Last November, she was in Brussels at La Roseraie theatre for a per-
formance designed specifically for a young audience, "Quand les
chiens et les chats parlaient" (When dogs and cats spoke). But, as is
only to be expected with someone of her reputation, these performanc-
es are not confined to the younger generation. Adults, well versed in her
ability to entertain, make sure they are part of the audience well before
the performance begins.
Arriving in Brussels early in the moving, B.! iliJiii:. makes the time to
enjoy a congenial breakfast with the show's organizers and then it's off to
La Roseraie for some last minute fine-tuning and rehearsal. At the theatre
it is a delight for her to rediscover acquaintances and many of her fans
before she appears officially on stage. And when she does, her story-
telling is delightfully relaxed and easy-going, delivered in her soft-spo-
ken voice. An amiable, informal style that charms everyone present.

B.!iiilijlii. has that special talent of making you think you are the only
person who counts for her at that moment.
Mimi, practically everybody calls her Mimi, is a huge stage presence.
She effortlessly creates a chemistry that would win over any audience
no matter how unpromising it might appear to start with.
She quickly involves the audience as extras in the performance and they
join in enthusiastically, singing songs often in Creole or Spanish -
without having the slightest idea what they are about. The younger
members of the audience are overawed, with mouths wide open, hard-
ly daring to breathe. They hang on to her every word, every syllable,
every breath.
"I use these simple storylines," she says, "and a universe of creatures
(rat, mouse, lizard, sparrow and so forth) to create all the atmosphere of
Haiti..." And, as she leads the audience on her journey, the fabulous
becomes reality! After the performance, Mimi was despite her many
years of experience walking on air because of the spell she had man-
aged to weave around the youngsters who had marvelled at her per-
formance, her words and music.
Later, she met with the Belgian side of the family of her deceased hus-
band, Grard B.iiiiJi:ii. her co-author of many books and other
works. Talking with her, she recalls her father, a senior member of the
medical faculty in Port-au-Prince and a descendant of a former
Marooon leader during Haiti's war of independence and her mother, the
daughter of a former Haitian President in the 1920s. From the age of 10,
Barthlmy travelled a great deal in the Caribbean and to Florida before
studying political science in Paris. There she was to discover a sense of
disorientation and disappointment. "When I was 16, having completed
my secondary school education, I left Haiti for France and soon under-
stood the painful meaning of the word exile," she remembered. "I had
family ties with the French, I belonged to a cultivated mulatto family,
but this was colonial France when the war in Algeria was in full spate.


For the foreign emigrant, the sole choice in France was assimilation."
She gave up her studies and now married, travelled with her husband.
First as he took up the post of cultural attach with the French
Embassy in Colombia, then the embassies in Bolivia, and Sri Lanka.
Following this period, she resumed her studies in 1972, taking a
degree course in Spanish literature. Then came a year-long stay with
the Garifunas [tribe] in Honduras studying their unique culture. This
tribe is a mix of Amerindian and African peoples, whose language,
Garifuna, is the Africanised survival of the Arawak tongue, where
speech differs according to gender (i.e. men and women do not speak
in the same way). As an example, the nouns used to specify the same
object are said differently depending on whether it is a male or female
speaker. It isn't, therefore, surprising after this experience that her
doctorate in theatre, focused on the role the theatre plays in the iden-
tity of a cultural minority: the Garifunas.
"Latin America, and more specifically Colombia, offered me the
opportunity to get in touch with many leading cultural figures of the
1960s," she explained. "My initiation into artistic life began with my
association with the TEC (Teatro Experimental de Cali), founded and
run by Enrique Buenaventura and the Casa de la Cultura de Bogota,
founded and run by Santiago Garcia. This enabled me to discover the
works of contemporary European and Latin American authors, such

as Brecht, Kantor, Grotowski, Eduardo Manet, Jose Triana, Arrabal,
Borges and Joao Cabral Do Melo Neto."
She took a keen interest in a wide variety of theatre, such as those of
Claude Alranq and Peter Brook, as well as, Eugenio Barba's Odin
Thtre and Mnouchkine Thtre du Soleil. She undertook training
opportunities with Eduardo Manet and the Roy Hart Thtre. Then she
performed in France under the direction of Rafael Murillo Selva, well-
known in Colombia. Later on, she was an assistant to the anti-establish-
ment director Manuel Jose Arce, who was then producing theatrical
works critical of the American military presence in Central and
Southern America.
The majority of her university research was undertaken at the same time
as these theatrical experiences. As she explains, "my first steps towards
the theatre, my on-the-job training and my university studies led to a
practice of theatre focused on the memory of my country. I had to fight
against a loss of identity, the alienation I experienced as a result of my
assimilation in France." And B.i iil!ijiii. concludes, "my approach to
the theatre is based on the need to put up a display of resistance for the
sake of my mental survival, to adopt a spirit of rebellion and activism."
Last work to appear: Book and recording "Dis-moi des Chansons
d'Hati". Publisher: Lise Bourquin Mercad. H.G. M


If 2007 was dominated by the climate change issue, 2008 is set to be the year of
biodiversity. The 188 States party to the International Convention on Biological
Diversity will meet together in Bonn, Germany 19-30 May. It will provide them with
an opportunity to take stock of how they are faring in their attempts to save declining
biodiversity, as well as, reaching an agreement on the thorny issue of the "fair and
equitable sharing of the benefits arising from genetic resources". On this tricky sub-
ject, the European Union is often called upon to play the role of mediator, helping heal
the rift between the countries of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.

big-brother, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
was bor as a consequence of the Rio Earth Summit in June
1992 at the same time as the Convention on Climate Change.
In reality, the CBD is just as broad-ranging and aspires to conserve and
guarantee the sustainable use of the biological resources we depend
upon for our survival on the planet. However, rather than confining itself
to acting as a watchdog, the CBD has a more ambitious goal.
Specifically, with the arrival of biotechnologies and the extension of
property rights (including patents) in relation to living things -the CBD
is calling for a legal framework to guarantee the fair and equitable sha-
ring of the benefits of genetic resources. And this applies to all kinds of
resources such as plants, animal extracts and micro-organisms used to
produce items such as the active ingredients in medicinal products.
Consequently, in laying down this legal framework, there is a great deal
at stake in both biological and economic terms.

> Depletion

The Earth's rich biological resources are becoming depleted at a signif-
icant rate, the scientific community estimating that the total number of
species to have populated the Earth being as much as 10 times higher
than the current number. And although the process of extinction is
widely agreed to be a natural one, the rate of decline has speeded up
dramatically in recent times. Certainly, evidence of human-led extinc-
tion of many living organisms has been available for over a century and
it is predicted that if the present trend continues, around 50,000 species
are set to disappear every year over the coming decades.
As might be expected, due to their geographical location most ACP
countries have either a tropical or subtropical climate favouring the pro-
liferation of a wide variety of species. For example, the forests of
Central Africa alone are home to a wide range of flora and fauna: 400
or so mammal species, over 1,000 bird species and more than 10,000


I i' hq


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Our Planet

plant species, 3,000 of which are particular to This law upholds the 'farmer's privilege',
that habitat alone. Moreover, plants and ani- where farmers are allowed to keep some of the1
mals are at their most bountiful in the steppes crops they harvest so they can be used at a
and the savannah, particularly in Africa, later date. This privilege has become optional
thanks to a combination of natural conditions in other international discussions. This legisla-
and altemating wet and dry seasons. tive instrument also acknowledges the part
Today, ACP States are working together with the played by communities as the repositories of
EU to promote several initiatives designed to knowledge, reflected in royalties being paid
safeguard the rich continental and maritime for the use of this knowledge. Rules applied in -
resources. One example is the FISHBASE proj- the field in Africa are still quite rudimentary,
ect for "Strengthening Fisheries and as the authorities seem to be waiting for this
Biodiversity Management in ACP Countries". issue to be settled within the context of the
The aim here is to provide information to help CBD. On that basis, they can expect a long
the enforcement of policies that focus on con- wait as at their meeting late 2007, representa-
serving aquatic biodiversity, its sustainable tives of the 188 signatories of the Convention
exploitation and the equitable sharing of the were still in disagreement over this question.
benefits in keeping with the principles govem- As of now, major economic nations like
ing the Biodiversity Convention. Already, the Australia, New Zealand and Canada (the
project has established three regional centres in United States does not subscribe to the CBD)
Africa and the regional coordinators have super- are rejecting demands by the countries in the
vised project training activities and lent support South for access to the resources to be con-
to fisheries, scientists and specialist staff. trolled. M.M.B. M

,"". *. S **0 0 0 *

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Haiti lias endured more political and social turmoil than
most nations since it won its independence in 1804.
The frequent upheavals have undermined economic
and social well being. Over 50% of the population lives
on less than a dollar per day.
A degree of security has been put in place by the United
Nations Stabilisation Force, MINUSTAH, since 2004. It
means that the government can move forward with
plans to re-start the economy and deliver to its people.
Although lacking indigenous resources, it has trading
potential surrounded by middle income countries,

including the Dominican Republic on the same island of
"The first condition for investment is peace and stabili-
ty. That is why we have to put ail our energy into main-
taining peace and stability," said President Prval at the
annual opening of Parliament on 14 january 2008.
International donors are on board with a mix of project
and budget aid to underpin stability.
The dichotomies of this Caribbean country are many.
Its statistics on poverty are brutal yet its astoundingly
rich culture entrancing...


port Haiti



A look at the political upheavals of the past puts into perspective the current relative
stability in Haiti. For the government it is an opportunity, with needed donor support,
to consolidate its administration and take steps to restart the economy to alleviate

ainos, relatives of the Arawaks of
South America arriving in 2600 BC,
were the first known inhabitants of
the Hispaniola Island. One of the
most revered to this day was Queen Anacaona
or 'Golden Flower' who ruled over Xaragua,
one of the five kingdoms of the Hispaniola led
by caciques (Chieftans). She was one of the
last to succumb to Spanish influence on the
arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492 but at
a meal for the Spanish new governor in 1503,
her followers were arrested and executed.
Anacaona fled but was captured and hung in
Santo Domingo. It was estimated that origi-
nally there were between 100,000 to 1 million
Tainos on the island who were gradually wiped
out upon Columbus' arrival through epidemics
and enforced hard labour. But still Haiti's Taino
descent is still reflected in the country's culture
whilst some Haitians claim blood ties.

African slaves were brought over by the
French colonists in 1520 and inhabited the
Western portion of the island. In 1731, the
Spanish recognized the French colony Saint
Domingue and a border was drawn up along-
side two rivers.
Several slave leaders, including Francois
Dominique Toussaint l'Ouverture won free-
dom from their masters and France abolished
slavery in 1803.
The white heart was symbolically ripped out
of the French flag by rebel leader Jean-
Jacques Dessalines and the red and blue
stitched together, and the Haitian flag,
'Liberte ou la Mort' hoisted. On January
1804, after a decisive battle with the French,
Dessalines announced independence in
Gonaives and the African Haitans took con-
trol of the island restoring its Taino name
'Haiti', or "mountainous land."

Fast forward to the 20th century and the strate-
gic importance of Haiti as a shipping route.
Connecting the newly opened Panama Canal
led to a US invasion in 1915, the occupation
lasting until 1934. Several coups later, the dic-
tatorship of Francois Duvalier took hold in
1957, his support coming from burgeoning
middle class and rural poor. Reinforcing his
power with the 'Tontons Macoute', named
after the fictious Uncle Knapsack who carried
off children, they were allowed to extort cash
and goods from the population and in return
loyally protected their President. Jean-Claude
'Babydoc' Duvalier succeeded his father upon
his death in 1971. In 1986 'Babydoc' fled to
France. A period of instability followed from
1986 to 1990. Faced with the return of
Duvalier's supporters, the Supreme Court


Haiti I port

ordered elections in December 1990 when a
young Priest, Jean Bertrand Aristide, broadly
supported by civil society, came to power in
September 1991 under the banner of
'Lavalas', meaning 'flood'. Current President,
Ren Prval, was his Prime Minister from
February 1991 to September 1991.
Just seven months in office, a coup staged by
General Raoul Cdras was immediately con-
demned and an economic embargo was
imposed and maintained until October 1994,
when Aristide returned with US backing.
Aristide was barred from seeking a consecu-
tive term in the 1996 Presidential Election
won by Ren Prval, who in 2001 became the
first democratically elected leader in the
country's history to complete a mandate.
Artistide remained a popular figure forming
the 'Fanmi (family) Lavalas' party, and the
Foundation for Democracy giving interest
free loans for business and support for health
and education. He was elected President in
November 2000 winning 91.7% of the vote.
The 200th Anniversary of the country's inde-
pendence was marked by civil protest forcing
Aristide into exile on 29 February 2004,
although he claims he was made to leave by
US fear of unrest spreading. Boniface
Alexandre became interim President with the
task of organising elections within two years.
On 7 February 2006, Ren Prval once more
became President, elected for the period 2006
to 2011 under the broad movement of
LESPWA (Hope) which pulled together sever-
al political parties and civil society groups. His
was a slim majority of 51.21%, after blank bal-
lots were counted, requiring the support of
other parties to form a coalition government.

"Things are changing in our country. Politics
can be done in a different way. The country
cannot, at the slightest opportunity, topple
over into instability," said Prval in his annual
opening speech to Parliament on 14 January
2008. He outlined some of the main economic
challenges and need for state modernisation to
cement security, including changes to the jus-
tice system, the need for credit and investment
(see article on industry) and reliable and prop-
erly priced energy.
The presence of the United Nations
Stabilisation Force for Haiti (MINUSTAH)
has largely been responsible for the return to
stability. Although there are still too many kid-
nappings, said the President, whose perpetra-
tors should be brought to justice.
Following the departure of ex-President Jean
Bertrand Aristide, a UN Security Council


Resolution in June 2004 mandated a force to
stabilise the and to help the transitional gov-
ernment hold elections. "Armed gangs were
holding the country at ransom," said David
Wimhurst, MINUSTAH's Director of Public
Relations, speaking at its headquarters based
in Port-au-Prince's former Hotel Christopher.
MINUSTAH currently numbers 7,060 military
personnel, mostly from Latin America, with a
large contingent from Brazil and 2,091 police
officers (UN figures November 2007) helping
to build a Haitian police force. MINUSTAH's
new commander since September 2007 is
Tunisian Diplomat, Hdi Annabi. Wimhurst
explained that some force was necessary to
clamp down on gangs responsible for violence
and kidnapping. "It took three months to break
up the gangs, some lives were lost and 800
arrested in Cit Soleil," added Wimhurst.
Since February 2007, it is easier to circulate
in Cit Soleil. MINUSTAH's actions will,
"create a space for longer term development
to take place," added Wimhurst. "The only
way we can leave the state is if a fully profes-
sionally equipped police force is at the serv-
ice of the state." To date, 11,000 Haitian
police officers have been trained whereas at
least 20,000 are required. Wimhurst said that
MINUSTAH is also funding 16 boats to
patrol Haiti's Northern shores, a drop off
point for illegal narcotics.

A recent report by the NGO, International
Crisis Group (ICG)', says that the government
should encourage Haiti's 3 million diaspora to
invest more in the country whose remittances
came to US$1.65 billion in 2006 amounting to
35% of the GDP. ICG's senior analyst,
Damien Helly, said this economic contribu-
tion should be reflected in the political system
by facilitating voting abroad and allowing
dual citizenship and diaspora representation
within Parliament, which is likely to require
constitutional reform. The paper also calls for
a diaspora task force mandated by Haitian
officials, all political forces, civil society and
the private sector, to draw up a 10-year strate-
gy backed by international support.
Important too for the country's future is a bi-
national strategy with the Dominican Republic
despite international condemnation of the vio-
lations of rights of Haitian workers in its neigh-
bouring country (see article by Gotson Pierre).
In March 2008, the 3rd edition of a bi-national
fair on eco-tourism and cultural links will take
place in Belledre, Haiti, jointly organised by
the Dominican body, la Fondation Science et
Art and. 'Fondation pour le Dveloppement du
Tourism A/. ...... (FONDTAH) and San
Pont Ayiti, explained Dr. Jos Serulle the
Dominican Republic's Ambassador Haiti.2

s... ..
C~ -r .




snapshot of Haiti
figuress fo:r 20 6 unless holler ise stated.i

8. .7 m million ..-. .............
^-? "i.-. i_ -..B
--- -_--- .2--

4rer" 27,750 c.q krn

Piuln.tir n. 8 7 trillion ...

GDP- LIS5 billion

Ainnuil GDP qrrvroth 2.3%H

Long termn 4ebt LJSS1.3 billion 20ns

Lit_' etpectanc> 52 figuree foi lune 2005)

IUNEP inderi 146 out of 177
(2007-2208 report).

Per capital GNI US$48u

imports LIS$1.5S billion i20u6 estimanticon)
mainly. food, fuels, machiner,
manufactured clo:ils

Erports UiS$494Ml (20u6 estinimti:in'
Coffee, oils, mangoes, ,etli.er.

President, Pen Prval since 14 Kla 2u06
( -ye.li terir)
Head of Government, Prime Minister,
lacques EdoLuaid Alexis since 30 Mayl 20il0

Bicanieral National Assembllv and Senate
Senate (3u seats) elections held every six
yeais but candidate with tie most votes in
each ot the ten departmentL erves 6 years,
the nexi 4 years and 3' placed, 2 yai',
meaning an eleticon tIc replace a third of the
rmenibers will take place in 20u8.

Chamrber of DepLJties (99 seati, elected
ei,,, 4 year' next Plection in &pril 2010

Main political parties. Fusion, Nleri|ing ot
Haitian Social Democrats; OPL, Stru|igiling
Peoples' Orqanisatio.n, Alyans Democratic
Alliance National; Fiont for the
Reconstruction ot Haiti; Aitibonite in Action

Snore; World Bank, UNDP European
Union, CIA, CG:cernment :if Haiti.

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erge Gilles is leader of the Fusion des
Sociaux Democrates Haitienne
(Haitian Social Democratic Fusion
Party) with one of the biggest parlia-
mentary representations; 6 out of 30 seats in
the Senate and 20 out of 99 in the Chamber of
Deputies. Fusion participates in the "coali-
tion" or what Gilles subtly refers to as a "plu-
ralist" government formed following the 2006
elections.With a vote of 2.62 per cent, he was
one of the defeated candidates out of 33 who
stood in the February 2006 Presidential elec-
tion which brought President Prval to power.
Secretary General of Fusion, Robert Auguste,
is iI !.i1 l. in charge of the Health Ministry.
Gilles spent 25 years in overseas exile during
the period of period of Duvalier dictatorships,
returning to Haiti in 1986. On the mid-
November day when we met, he was preparing


for an aftemoon ministerial meeting with the
cabinet to which all five opposition leaders
had been invited by President Prval to discuss
a World Bank evaluation of government. In
our meeting in Ptionville, whilst applauding
this open consultation, Gilles voiced concem
that the current leadership of Prime Minister
Jacques Edouard Alexis and President Preval
had so far fallen short in, "dealing with the
major challenges of the past."

Ren Prval has previous experience of run-
ning the country. He is a former Prime
Minister and also President and is not abusing
his position. He understands the fragile state of
things. To date, we've managed to overcome

security problems. The national police which
broke up has been set up again, and supported
by Minustah, the United Nations' Stabilisation
force for Haiti is doing good work. This plu-
ralist govemment has brought about political
stability. There is some criticism but from peo-
ple who are not represented in government.
Everyone represented has accepted to stay in
this govemment formed by consensus to guar-
antee the country's stability and with the help
of the international community, make the con-
struction of roads and rehabilitation of public
services possible to give the government some
peace of mind. This country has many prob-
lems. On the less positive side, after two years
the government has not managed to overcome
the major challenges of the past. What I'm
telling you, I've also told President, Ren
Prval. Our discussions are very frank.


1 I 'I .1 1''



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managed. At the time, there was no army and
the police were corrupt. The Minustah option
wasn't a bad one.
What we have to do now is to ready ourselves
for Minustah's departure. We have to take
advantage of Minustah being here to train the
police force and establish another force
some refer to it as a 'gendarmerie'others a new
army -no matter what the name, it is needed
to patrol ports, airports and borders and to
effectively fight the drugs problem.

We have a very weak administration.When
you've had catastrophes like we've had, a
very weak administration is left behind. I sup-
port the Canadians who've invested a lot in
training. I would like to see a training school
for administration in each department and
also two here (the capital, Port-au-Prince).

You can't say that the opposition is corrupt, not
at all. You can't say that Ren Preval is corrupt,
this just isn't the case at all. I know of states
that are corrupt from top to bottom. Where
there is corruption in Haiti it concems the
drugs trade and a section of the justice system.
Prval set up a committee to look into reform
of the justice system and the Parliament has
just adopted three laws on the independence
and a purging of the justice system (laws
passed on November 27 2007). There is going
to be a training school for judges. All our
Parliamentarians backed this reform.

I feel that decentralisation advances democ-
racy but it's true that we have not yet drawn
up a legal framework for decentralisation.
Parliamentarians are working to move ahead
with this so that the municipal authorities
(collectivits territoriales) can take off. The
functioning of a municipal authority is not
only a matter of finding the funding.

Views of streets in Les Cayes.
Marc Roger

From top to bottom:
Opposition leader, Serge Gilles.
Debra Percival
Les Cayes.
Marc Roger
Map of Haiti
Copyright Minustah


cmms r

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eport Haiti

Gotson Pierre*



Relations have not always been easy due to the rights of Haitian workers in the
Dominican 'Bateyes.'** Moves to bring the countries together by opening up informa-
tion channels can only contribute to better understanding. This will contribute to the
bi-national policy being drawn up by the Haitian government aimed at closer
mutually beneficial relations between the two countries.

n the early years of the 20th Century,
Haitians left home to work in the
Dominican sugar cane plantations that
supplied factories built or financed by
the Americans. In the 1960s an agreement
was concluded between the two countries for
the supply of seasonal workers to gather the
Dominican sugar cane harvest. After this
agreement was condemned following the fall
of the Duvalier dictatorship in 1986, many
Haitians continued to migrate to the
Dominican Republic, principally in search of
Today, although no population census has
been taken, Dominican officials speak of
over a million Haitians living in the country.
The Dominican Republic sees this migration
as a burden and is continually repatriating
Haitian migrants under conditions that vio-
late the most basic human rights, including
the breaking up of families, deportation at
night with no coordination with the Haitian
authorities, and other forms of ill-treatment.
The background to this present situation is a
long history of enmity and disputes. The
Haitians have not forgotten the massacre of
about 30,000 of their countrymen in the
Dominican Republic in 1937 on the orders of
the dictator Rafael Trujillo. For their part, the
Dominicans remember the harsh regime of
occupation imposed on them by Jean-Pierre
Boyer's Haitian Government between 1822
and 1844.
There are also cultural differences between
the two societies that fuel prejudices in the

Dominican Republic, whose population
claims an Indian and Spanish heritage, while
the Haitians invoke their African heritage.
This state of affairs does not favour under-
standing between Haitians and Dominicans
and influences the work of the media, affec-
ting information about Haitian-Dominican
For a long time, the Haitian media provided
only sporadic coverage of the Dominican
issue, based on dispatches by international
press agencies. While the Haitian press ope-
rated in almost total ignorance of their neigh-
bouring country, the Dominican press simply
reported the official line on Haiti held by the
Dominican authorities.

Over the past few years, however, the devel-
opment of New Communication and
Information Technologies (NICTs) and the
activities of alternative sectors of the commu-
nication field have allowed information on
Haitian-Dominican relations to take a new
direction and acquire an increased presence
in the Haitian media.
One of the agencies that has worked systemat-
ically on this question is AlterPresse
(www.alterpresse.org), an alternative Haitian
news network and member of the Groupe
Mdialternatif that started operations in 2002.
AlterPresse gives priority to reporting on
Haitian-Dominican relations, regularly cover-
ing key issues in both French and Spanish.

It has produced several hundred articles,
some in cooperation with Dominican col-
leagues, mainly concerned with migration,
border issues, bi-national trade, human
rights, the environment, natural disasters,
health, tourism, culture and so on.
With more than 20,000 hits a day and with its
reports relayed by a range of media (radio,
television, newspapers, Internet sites)
throughout Haiti, the Dominican Republic
and further afield, AlterPresse has helped to
ensure greater media coverage of Haitian-
Dominican affairs, as well as, influencing
several decisions on these issues.
AlterPresse has professional and friendly
relations with Espacio Insular, an alternative
Dominican agency that came on line in
August 2006. In February 2007, they signed
a cooperation agreement and last November
completed a study on Haitian-Dominican
relations and how these are presented in the
media in both countries, organising a meeting
of Haitian and Dominican journalists in Port-
au-Prince to discuss the issues involved.
The journalists realise that the two countries
that share the same island also share a com-
mon destiny. Understanding and cooperation
is therefore necessary to overcome any hosti-
lity, facilitate understanding and harmony, and
create prospects for a common development
rooted in a sense of solidarity. I

*Gotson Pierre is a co-founder of the Groupe
Media Alternatif
**Town where sugar workers live in poor conditions


but is this merely artistic lic
investment and low products

canvas and the bounty of the land is no exception,
?? The real picture is of land degradation, weak
romotina uraent calls for reform.

% of Haiti's population Chavannes says today's "dramatic situation" country has suffered from a lack of political
still depends on the land has deeper roots. DelIayd agricultural reform commitment to the sector, he argues.
for a living, yet the sector is parfl to blame, he says, with no prperr An ever-increasing population has also taken
only raises 25% of Gross sharing out of land since independence in its toll. At independence. 85 of Haiti's half

por Haiti

Many others involved in the sector in Haiti
agree the country could better meet its own
food needs particularly of poultry and eggs. In
the 1980s, industrial production of eggs took
off. Then, 100,000 were produced daily in
Haiti, according to Michel Chancy of the
Association Haitienne pour la Promotion de
i t. i-..... Haitien Association for Livestock
Rearing (AHPEL), and also of the NGO
Vtrimed. Now just 30,000 eggs per month
are produced by Haiti's remaining large farms.
With better infrastructure, credit and good
supply of electricity, the Dominican Republic
has filled the gap left in the markets, says
Greet Schaumans of the Belgian NGO,
Broederlijk Delen.
As for chicken production, from 6 million
annually in 1980s, production declined sharply
in the early 1990s due to the economic embargo.
At the end of the 1990s, the market had been
filled by massive imports of frozen chicken
pieces, according to Vtrimed figures. Now,
the country's chicken production is just a quar-
ter of 1980s levels, or 1.2-1.5 million per
Nearly everyone connected with the sector
says what is lacking is credit to invest in tech-
nology and inputs to enable farming to fulfill
its potential. Gabriele lo Monaco, counsellor
at the EU's Haiti delegation says, "There is
virtually no investment in agriculture by the
smallholder." Adds Chavannes: "There's been
a de-capitalisation of the peasant farmer."
Chavannes says that farmers in the Dominican
Republic can access credit at 12% annual and
as little as 6%. In Haiti, credit is either unaf-
fordable or unavailable. Interest rates of 20-
30% are common. He reflects "We need a
political commitment to agriculture that is
lacking. We need irrigation, reforestation and
inputs. We will be calling for a diversified
agriculture at the 35th Anniversary Congress
in March 2008, also fair trade and reform of
the land."
Serge Gilles, leader of the Fusion party of
Social Democrats, also stated in an interview,
the need for credit and land reform to enable
people to own land which would encourage
individual investment. He also feels that Haiti
has a future in organic farming, this produce
fetching much higher prices than ordinary
produce in international markets.

One agricultural project which has made a
mark was set up by Vtrimed, the NGO of
professionals specialised in animal health and

production whose aim is to help small rural
farms increase income. Dairy produce such as
sterilised milk and yogurt manufactured in 10
micro-transformation units are distributed
country-wide by youth and rural organizations.
'Lt Agogo', the marketing name for the
products, has won a prize for best product in
South America.
Agriculture is not a priority sector for the 10th
EDF, but the EU has previously funded many
projects with NGOs to promote food security
and also launched an agricultural diversifica-
tion scheme for the centre and south. A
recently approved 3M project, with
E495,000 from the government of Haiti, will
draw up information on the vulnerability of
those dependent on agriculture country-wide,
to be carried out by the Food and Agriculture
Organisation (FAO) and the Haitian Statistical
and Information Institute, the aim being to
develop strategies against food insecurity.

A few niche products like Rebo and Haitian
Blue coffee and the Francis mango, popular
with the Miami-based Haitian diaspora, have
had some export success. Although poor infra-
structure and the limited refrigeration facilities
are obstacles to exports of perishables on a
wider scale.
Some feel that Haiti should follow in Brazil's
footsteps in growing more sugar cane to pro-
duce bio-ethanol. This would cut back on the
country's fuel bill, argue some. But the
Belgian NGO, Broederlijk Delen, says in a
paper that before going ahead there should be
questions about whether this would be the best
use of land. More widespread use of land for
bio-ethanol production globally will push up
prices of foodstuffs, it argues. For import-
dependent Haiti, this may offset any benefit
from cheaper fuel in addition to the huge
investment in water and infrastructure
required for any bio-ethanol venture. D.P. R

F'.i i~di iiiiii riii F'~~ii- iii-F'iiii~
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report H,,





If you're selling passion fruit, clothing or music and not up by sunrise, forget about
finding a place to pitch in Port-au-Prince or the neighboring commercial area of
Ptionville. Every patch of sidewalk will have already been taken. Street traders eek out
a living day-by-day.
I .

l production nation

dmplois OCODE

"Need for credit
and investment to
boost production".
Debra Percival

hat appears to be a brisk
business in a market of
nearly 9 million consumers
at street level hides a lack of
organisation, poor internal demand, lack of
credit leading to weak investment in the pro-
ductive sectors, and little value added to
products. Haiti's overall trade balance with
the EU in 2004 was minus 77M, textiles
being the only sector registering an export
surplus of 2M to the EU market for the
same year.
With improved security on the streets and a
stable government in power, Haitians are
looking to a healthier domestic economy to
deliver jobs and improve their livelihoods.
Security issues have recently prevented inter-

national companies from investing in Haiti
but there are now signs of external invest-
ment. Digicel, the Caribbean-wide mobile
phone network, is one major regional busi-
ness realising there are big profits in the
Haitian market, the company's red billboards
commanding attention in the capital's public
Haiti's abundant creativity and potentially
large domestic market, as well as, those on its
doorstep in the United States and the wider
Caribbean, are obvious assets but, as far as
setting up smaller businesses goes, time and
time again those met during our report cited a
lack of credit as the biggest obstacle to get-
ting started. The country's business profile is
not enhanced by poor infrastructure, espe-

cially roads linking the capital to the rest of
the country, frequent power cuts, and the fact
that it has few indigenous raw materials.

One European Union (EU) project assisting a
push to stimulate national production is
PRIMA or in Kwyol, the 'Pwogram
Ranfosman Entegre na sekt Koms an Ayti'.
The 4-year 8M project which runs from 2005
to 2009, is helping to give small businesses a
leg up. It is already over-subscribed, says its
Director, Klaus Dieter Handschuh, prompting
the National Authorising Officer (NAO) Price
Pady to suggest a follow-up project would be


Haiti port

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aili's vorld renowned rum brand,
PjBabncojLrt, has gone from
strength to strength despite
recent insecurity in the country sa's the
ccimpan''s Directcir General Thierr%
Gardre Barbancouirt is recognized by
drinks magazines as one ot the best tive
Lunms in tle 'vol Id. Gardre says that vhite
oak casks tror France's Linil'uin region
foi rmnatLJing and the L!ie ot !Lluga cJnle.
iithei than imported molasses both make
the difterence c thle tacte ot fis particular-
Iv snicmoth rum The company v.ilh 250
employees, cirrentl' prc:duces ? nmillicn
bottles if 4, 8 and 15 S ear-old rums annu-
allv with sales especiaIll str,:,ni in the US,
Panama and Chile.
Gardre is the 4th generation in the fanii-
ls-compan. started in 1862. He explains
that an EU regional project tor Caribbean
iLum producers has boosted production.
The -~770 4-year "one off' project toi all
Caribbean rurn producers wa% originally
started up to offset losses to the industry.
foi a deal done in the \VTO in 1996 in
Singapore on the opening of marketL for
white spirits Launched in 2002, il v.as
recently% extended La lune 20101 to use ill
available funding

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Current political stability enables the 10th EDF (2008-2013) to be disbursed to key
sectors of the economy crucial to Haiti's future. A total of e291M will focus on road
building and governance, reform of the justice system and de-centralisation as well as
some general budgetary assistance.

eligible for the European Development
Fund (EDF) for the first time under
the Lom IV Convention in 1990, a
series of political and institutional
crises in Haiti spanning two decades resulted
in allocation of EU funds earmarked for key
sectors of the economy to be mostly re-chan-
nelled into emergency, humanitarian and 'post-
conflict' projects.
The coup against President Bertrand Aristide
in 1991 delayed implementation of the
112.2M 7th EDF (1990-1995).
Disbursement of the 148M 8th EDF (1995-
2000) was beset by "an absence of govern-
ment" resulting in, "appropriate measures"
being taken by the EU in 2001 including re-
directing funds to emergency assistance,

Map of Haiti showing main road networks.
By courtesy of Vincenzo Collarino

projects to be implemented through civil soci-
ety and additional assistance by the European
Community Humanitarian Office (ECHO).
One of the few longer-term projects to get
underway was support to the education sector
in 1999. A 28M sum to PARQUE,
'Programme d'Amlioration de la Qualit de
lEducation' (the programme to improve the
quality of education) included the construction
and rehabilitation of 17 teacher training facili-
ties ('Ecoles Fondamentales d'Application et
Centres d'Appui Pdagogique' EFACAP),
serving 350 schools across four administrative
departments. This "tremendously successful"
scheme says Price Pady, National Authoring
Officer has recently been extended with 14M
of 9th EDF's 'post conflict' funds (see below).

By the time the 2004 political crisis ended, the
9th EDF was on stream (2000-2007). Its
167.6M budget was redirected for "post-
conflict" support to the 2006 elections and
rehabilitation of the country. The remainder of
the 7th and 8th EDFs were pooled giving a
total of 276M to the 'post-crisis' situation.
The holding of elections (18M), business
support to education through PRIMA (see
'industry' article), some road building and

many diverse projects through civil society
were funded (See Avsi below).
The stretch of road linking Port-au-Prince to
Mirebalais was being asphalted when we
visited although construction through the steep
and rocky terrain which climbs from Port-au-
Prince, has been difficult, explained Roberto
Rivoli, road engineer with French company,
BCEOM, which is overseeing the construction
work. This stretch is one section of the road
between the capital to Cap Haitien in the
northern coast. An additional section of this
road to Hinche and also the upgrading of the
Cap Haitien to Dajabon road on the border of
the Dominican Republic are also underway
with 9th EDF funding.
Improved economic management by the
newly elected government also attracted
general budget aid of 36M for 2006 to 2007.

"All projects are a priority in Haiti," says
Price Pady. The construction and upgrading
of roads to stimulate economic growth is the
main focus of the 10th EDF with an allocation
of 175M.Of Haiti's total 3,400 km of roads,
just 10% are in good condition. The stretches
earmarked for the 10th EDF support are St.
Raphael-Cap Haitien, ring roads around Cap
Haitien and Mirebalais, and a road from


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e can niove around safely
now," 'ay Filmmetta
Cappellini, soci,-educatilonal
consultant for the Italian NGO, Associazione
de( \olontari per il Ser,'izio Inlernazionale
(AVSI., v.hicih is running an EDF proilect cto
build peace in Cit Soleil Lo the north of Port-
au-Prince, ils shanty h dwellings home Ltc an
estiniated 50,0nn Haitiian Pieiouii', con-
trolled by armed gangs using Liolence and
kidnapping, siice February 2007 life on the
streets is easier, many of the perpetrators ot
violence having been arrested with the help
ot 'Ilnlustali
The 1 .2NM three-year (2u'i7-2uC09J prc:ject,
"Respekte Mli:un, Bati Kav' includes peace
building inititiaves with an 201.0u00 allica-
tion frci:m the NGO justice and Peace. It is
teaching that, 'there is an alternative tc:
armed ilangis," says Carlo Zorzi, AVSI's Haiti
repir entatie.
It's not difficult tcl explain the frustratioin iif
those who live in this 5kmn sq piece ot land
without basic facilities, jobs and notl knowing
where their nex-t meal is coming frmni Bullet
holes in s:nime ot the dwellings are e,,idence of
the a 'ailability i:f weapons
"'It was at first difficult to put across the nmi-
sage of peace," explain Fiammentta Capellini
since pe'jple .veie iu.ed to receiving some-
thing material as ain ePxchnge The pro-
jgramme gies tiadinig to 'nidiatois ot p&ace'
who pass on the message to others who sign
a, 'Declaratiioin i:f comrmitmnent tc. peace
Carlo Zorzi savs it v;as difficult to impart a
visionn ot the future on the young peciple,
mainly aqed 18-28 The proqramiine is alsc:
gi,.ini| nicre i|eneral support tcir example,
help with CV preparation
II is also pro,,idinq social assistance and ps -
chological counselling to younger ciildien.
The suiroundinq unrest has engendered Lio-
lence withliin families agaiin't iomein and chil-
dren explains Fiammetta Cappellini.
Zorzi says that theie is a lot of need for tui their
work in 'Cit Soleil' and ilso in the 'luni ot
Mlatissant, to the south of the capital An
urban horticultural project in t res and roofs
cciiild be usetul, and he stresses the need to
assist local authorities Sa.i Zorzi: 'The ma:v'r
[ot Cit Scleil] has been elected but has little
influence or capacity.

por Haiti






r -~ -.k a .** n~- -

v. -

three-day tour in November 2007
by a score of Japanese tourists
made headline news in Haiti's 'Le
Nouvelliste' newspaper. What
was special about this group is that they were
not development workers, nor friends or fam-
ily of UN personnel, nor conference-goers, all
keeping Haiti's hotels in business lately.
With another group of these "real" tourists
from the Far East due early 2008, there's opti-
mism that vacationers are now being enticed
back to Haiti.
Tourism has been singled out as a priority for
the government to generate employment,
revenue and growth, but luring visitors back
is still a huge public relations task. UN blue
helmets are a common sight around the
country, and will be so for the foreseeable
future. Sporadic kidnapping in exchange for
cash reported in the international press also,
frighten tourists away. Rutted and pot-holed
roads mean that country-wide sight-seeing
appeals only to those with a sense of
On the other hand, it's easy to see why the
government is upbeat about the sector's
potential. There's a huge variety of places to
visit immersing visitors in the country's rich
history and culture, yet at the same time, you

can enjoy the Caribbean's big selling points:
white sand and a laid back ambiance in most
parts of the country. "Haiti is a cocktail of
destinations," explains Giliane Csar
Joubert, Executive Director of Haiti's
Tourism Association.
Anne Rose Schoen Durocher, Director of the
ARCA Advertising Company in Port-au-
Prince, who has lived in Haiti for the past 28
years, first arriving as a guide for a leading
European tour operator, says tourism was
healthy in the 1970s. Then, one of the coun-
try's most famous landmarks, 'La Citadelle',
dramatically perched on 'Pic-la-Ferrire'
built by King Henri Christophe to prevent
against reinvasion from the French, used to
see 600 visitors weekly. At the foot of the
Citadelle are the remains of the Milot Sans
Souci palace of Henri-Christophe, destroyed
by an earthquake in 1842.
The sight of refugees in boats fleeing Haiti
towards the end of the Duvalier years and the
HIV crisis which was not handled well
from a PR point of view -scared tourists
away and the sector never recovered, says
Durocher: "The country went backwards
very, very fast and tourism at the same speed.
By 1986-1987 tourism was at a standstill,"
she explains.

Her "must-sees" include Jacmel, a pretty
19th Century town, lost in time in the south,
built by coffee traders with Victorian cast
iron pillars and now associated with handi-
crafts. Cap Haitien in the north is Haiti's 2nd
city and near La Citadelle.
Les Cayes, built in 1720, is a laid back town
in the south-west. "The south is totally
unspoilt with miles of incredible sandy
beaches," says Durocher. Cte des Arcadins
just to the North of Port-au-Prince also has
stretches of sandy beach.
Tourists should not skip the heaving Port-au-
Prince. Bang in the centre, the Champs de
Mars built in 1953 and recently spruced up
by President Ren Prval, is a sort of recre-
ational space or meeting place, a stage for
Haitians to see and be seen. In the same spot,
the Muse d'Art Haitien houses a vast col-
lection of nave art. At the sight of the stark
white Presidential Palace, imagine the com-
ings and goings of Haiti's rulers.
Not far away, Hotel Oloffson's Thursday
voodoo jazz evenings are not to be missed.
Graham Greene's Hotel Trianon in 'The
Comedians' is known to be based on Hotel
Oloffson, where he wrote part of the novel.


.... . ....


Haiti I port

-' iii iii I- [i~ ii i . Ii........
''''iI~-i ~Ii-i 'iii I *i~~i~ii iii ''ii I
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Port-of-Prince's numerous gingerbread
houses feature Victorian embellished bal-
conies, turrets, gables and sloping roofs. Up
the hill, galleries in the commercial district
of 'Ptionville' are full of work by Haiti's
much sought after artists. Even further up at
'Botilliers', take in a bird's eye view over
Towards the north-west, Gonaives is where
the independence of Haiti was declared on 1
January 1804 and on Haiti's south-west fin-
ger, the Macaya National Park is the coun-
try's remaining virgin cloud forest peak ris-
ing to 2347 m. Anne Rose Durocher is keen
to share her passion: "We must show what an
incredible country Haiti is."

With such few travellers spending a night in
Haiti, it's a surprise to learn from the Ministry
of Tourism that as many as 600,000 visit the
country annually. Nearly all are day trippers
brought in on the Royal Caribbean cruise
liner, 'Liberty Overseas'. The boat calls at the
white sands of Labadie in the north 2-3 times
per week, each sailing disembarking some
4,300 tourists. Visitors are levied US$6, half
of which goes to the Haitian government and
the rest to the company that runs the beach
facilities. With the Citadelle a mere hop away,
there is the feeling that visitors could part with
more cash on trips to this fortress in the sky,
but poor infrastructure hampers tours, explains
Paul Emile Simon, urban architect at the
Ministry of Tourism.
There's a lot of hope too for bi-national
projects with the Dominican Republic, inclu-
ding development of Etang Saumtre and
Lago Enriquillo in the Dominican Republic.
The lakes are in the same "ecological band,"
explains Simon and share fauna, crocodiles,
iguanas and flamingos. Simon sees opportuni-
ties for hotels and the golf facilities on the fiat
land that straddles the border area.
Some feel that Haiti should be offered as a
'parallel destination' on a circuit taking in
Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Cuba.
Although there are very good quality family
run hotels in Haiti, the country would benefit
from investment by an international chain,
feels ATH's Giliane Joubert.
There's encouragement given too to Haiti's
diaspora to invest more in the sector. The
'Haiti Tourism Development Summit' organ-
ised by the MWM Associates, Port-au-Prince,
20-22 June 2008, will look amongst other
things at how private public-partnerships can
work together to develop the sector.

.. :. I



I 11


- I


discovering Europe

Jean-Franois Herbecq

Forming Europe's new eastern border, Romania seems to be developing quicker than
any other European country. Afterjust over a year as a member of the European Union
it is experiencing rapid economic growth, even while its social and physical
infrastructure awaits reform. Additionally, it is a country with marked regional
contrasts, making it a largely unexplored but promising tourist destination.
Transylvania in particular, with its many minority groups and mysterious traditions,
is a fine example of multicultural diversity.

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nua r~I i'i i lIit I 'i i t- i: i rI. .ii t- uu I ui
i ln Ih il ; r uii'ii i'ui, i :,i: u ' j|i.::i



Romania's entry into
the European Union
at the beginning of 2007
marked a turning point
in its foreign policy as
the country embraced
Europe's cooperation
and development
objectives, and joined
the group of donor
countries. However,
with regard to the ACP
countries, it is a policy
that remains embryonic.

I The Berlaymont building, Brussels 2006. CEC


ccession to the EU in January
2007 represented an historic
moment for Romania, although
the benefits of membership had
already made themselves felt before this date
with a series of reforms and an average 6%
growth rate over the previous seven years.
Foreign investments had also seen a sharp
increase but unemployment had remained low.
However, becoming a full member of the
'club' brought the benefits of complete access
to the internal market, economic policies and
the social cohesion of the EU, coupled with an
increased presence on the international stage.
For Romania's Permanent Representation to
the European Union, 2007 was a clear success
for the country in economic, social and politi-
cal terms. But Europe aside, what about its
policies towards other countries and specifi-
cally those of the ACP?
"The support of Ceausescu's communist
regime for certain African countries damaged
the image of cooperation," explains Daniel
Daianu, recently elected as a Liberal member
of the European Parliament.

"Political regimes come and go, but the people
remain," stresses Foreign Minister Adrian
Cioroianu, who does not rule out political dia-
logue with an economic dimension in order to
win new markets for Romania and diversify
energy supply sources. The reality is that
Romania is losing markets in Africa as eco-
nomic and trade relations turn increasingly
towards Western and geographically closer
countries. Today the country's principal trading
partners in sub-Saharan markets are Angola,
the Cte d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea,
Nigeria, Sudan and South Africa.
Yet as they stress at the Permanent
Representation to the EU, Romania has much
to offer to African States. Indeed, Romania's
universities train over 30,000 experts and
these have contributed to a wide range of
activities, with a significant number of them
.1ii!ciil. working in various African States:
civil engineering and infrastructure projects in
Nigeria and Ghana; mining and oil-drilling
operations in Nigeria, Senegal and Burundi;
farming projects in Mozambique and
Madagascar; water drilling in Zambia, and

Iscoverlng Europe

assembly plants for the automotive and rail
industry in Nigeria.
Socialist MEP Corina Cretu believes now is
the time to forge new relations between
Romania and other countries, not forgetting
that as a donor country Romania must now
take account of its own responsibilities.
Former Finance Minister Daniel Daianu offers
some words of reassurance: "Eastward EU
enlargement does not mean a reduced cooper-
ation budget. On the contrary, the global budg-
et is experiencing growth. That said, develop-
ment cooperation policy in Romania remains
rather parochial and this must change!"

Even if, since it joined the EU, relations
between Romania and the countries of sub-
Saharan Africa have assumed an important
dimension in its foreign policy, it is Euro-
Atlantic integration that remains the number
one objective, as they explain at the Permanent
Representation in Brussels. Countries that are
geographically close, especially in Eastem
Europe and the Western Balkans, are the prior-
ity, together with those in the process of stabil-
isation where Romania is participating in
peacekeeping lg, ii.i luh .iq .I
Afghanistan. A .i !ci..cl.cc!i c R ,'!i.ii.i Ii.i
been the 'goo<. bii l!c ,Ii.! c ,,ii ihic !ieii!i .i-

tional stage. To date, Bucharest has never
refused when called upon to participate in
peacekeeping operations, with troops
deployed in Haiti, the DRC, the Cte d'Ivoire
(all French-speaking countries), Ethiopia and
Eritrea, Sudan, Liberia, Afghanistan, Nepal,
Timor Leste, Georgia and Kosovo.
As we said earlier, with EU membership
Romania ceased to be a beneficiary country
and became a donor, and will soon be con-
tributing to the European Development Fund
(EDF). It also plans to co-finance projects on
the African continent alongside other EU
countries. At the same time, the Romanian
Government has expressed its desire to sup-
port the Millennium Development Goals, as
well as UN activities in the fields of education
and health, climate change, food security,
humanitarian aid and peacekeeping.

Five million out of the 22 million inhabitants
of Romania speak French, which makes
Romania a member of the 'Francophonie'. In
2007, the Romanian Goverment introduced a
system of study grants, known as Eugne
Ionesco Awards, which are intended for for-
eign nationals seeking to study at Romania's
institutes of higher education. Under this
scheme, Romania awards a total of 1M
annually to PhD students and researchers from
French-speaking southern countries. The aim
is to allow students and researchers from these
countries to spend at least 10 months at one of
Romania's 15 institutions of higher education
that are renowned for their academic excel-
lence. The maximum number of grants
awarded in 2007 was 70 and this will increase

to 120 in 2008. Currently in its first year, the
Eugne Ionesco programme has brought to
Romania researchers from Benin, Cameroon,
the Cte d'Ivoire, Guinea, Mauritania,
Madagascar and Senegal.
The llth Francophonie Summit, held in
Bucharest in September 2006, presented a
series of events covering several cultural
aspects. The 'Francophonie in rhythm and
images' event, for example, saw artists and
groups from Morocco, Haiti, the DRC,
Djibouti, Vietnam, Senegal and Guinea give
open-air performances that were much
appreciated by the Romanian public. An art



n1 RomRnfl

More than 2 million Romanians live outside the country
but only around 60,000 foreigners live in Romania.
However, ail that is set to change as Romania becomes
a destination country with a relaunched economy in
need of labour. The newcomers are Moldavians, Turks
and Asians as well as Africans. For the latter, integration
is not always easy.

ormer student Amadou Niang can
testify to that: "As a Senegalese grant
holder, I was immediately disap-
pointed by the poor conditions for
university students. The room on the univer-
sity campus was in such a poor state that I
had to rent a room at my own expense. The
quality of the studies also leaves something
to be desired and there is corruption when it
comes to exams."

Nonetheless, after completing his studies,
Amadou Niang wanted to stay in Romania. His
reason for staying was love. But not even mar-
riage to a Romanian offers protection against
discrimination when dealing with the adminis-
tration or finding employment. Then there is the
problem of living as a mixed-race couple: "The
anti-discrimination law is just a cosmetic
device," he says. "It doesn't work in practice. It
simply imposes a fine with no redress for the

victim," adding that the Romanies probably
suffer more from racism than Africans. Despite
all this he says he has many Romanian friends.
Based on his own experiences, Amadou Niang
decided to found an association to help immi-
grants settle in Romania. And he is not alone in
taking action, as a programme called
'Democracy and courage' has been set up to
educate young people on how to reject racism
in schools. J.F.H.


White Black: The duo AIbNegru, formed by Romanian Andrei and Franco-Guinean
Kamara, is living proof that tolerance exists. A mix of Romanian pop with an oriental
flavour and French hip-hop with suggestions of reggae, AIbNegru sing of love and
acceptance. Their success and popularity are seen as remarkable in a country where
foreigners are often regarded with suspicion.


n 2004, when we started out, few

- people thought we had any
chance of success," remembers
Andrei, "but we have been going
strong for three years now. Our image, one
black and one white, has a very strong impact."
"Our message comes across well," adds
Kamara. "When they see us together, two
friends and two races making the same music,
people understand that an understanding
between two men of different colour and cul-
ture is possible."
"Guinean and French music have always fas-
cinated me. I was influenced by my Franco-
Guinean culture enriched over time by
Romanian culture," explains the Guinean
from Bucharest.
"And that makes Kamara a special person on


the Romanian musical market," adds his white
companion, Andrei.
AlbNegru's hits entitled Noi doi (We two) or
Muza mea (My muse) are sung in a mixture of
Romanian and French. This is taking quite a
risk in a country where, despite its traditional
Francophone leanings, English is seen as the
modem language. "That was something new,
using the French language in Romanian music.
But the years have passed and we can now say
that the fusion of French rap and Romanian
pop has been a success," enthuses Kamara.
Three albums in three years, participation in
Eurovision with a cosmopolitan group and a
host of other projects, including a tour in Spain
and possibly France emphasise that there is
nothing mixed about AlbNegru's success.
J.F.H. M

Romania Isicoverlng Europe


Iscoverlng Europe



Transylvania owes a great deal to the Irish author Bram Stoker who, by creating the
character of Dracula in 1897, produced so many strong images of Transylvania in the
popular imagination. But there is more to the region than castles shrouded in the
mists of the Carpathians. The region's architectural patrimony also includes some
unique fortified churches and practically intact Saxon towns and villages. Its
mountains and valleys also offer the visitor magnificent landscapes. Ail in ail it is a
region rich in potential attractions for the tourist.

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Iscoverlng Europe

Along the roads, with their many roadworks,
one looks at the roaring traffic. At a level
crossing, you slow down. Gypsies with their
Motorola phones are photographing a proces-
sion of sports cars!
The big towns are already attracting tourists.
In 2007, Sibiu, also known by its German
name of Hermannstadt, made the headlines
when it was named European capital of cul-
ture: this jewel of a town has been renovated to
acquire the status of a quality tourist destina-
tion. Less frequented, Brasov also possesses a
distinctive charm of its own, nestling at the
foot of the mountains. In Sighisoara, another
Saxon town, Japanese tourists have already

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We are in Szekelfold, in the country of the
Szkely, where the ethnic Hungarians live in
eastern Transylvania. This is a small town
where Hungarian is spoken more widely than
Romanian. There is little of interest to the
tourist here, apart from the museum.
Outside the city centre, a residential street
runs up the hill. At first it looks just like any
other street. Once past the church, the hous-
es become more modest. Fewer villas, more

suburban dwellings, then apartment blocks.
Nothing special. Then suddenly the street is
divided into two: lengthways. A wall, two
and a half metres high, separates the left and
right sides of the road. On one side it is
asphalted and a few cars are parked along-
side the apartment blocks. On the other, the
road becomes no more than a dirt track
alongside a row of modest houses. No cars.
A few children are playing.
A glance is enough to identify the divided
populations. On one side the 'whites' and on
the other the 'blacks' or 'tanned' meaning
the gypsies or Romanies.
Between them, a concrete wall.


he tiny mountainous region of
Maramures, neighboring the Ukraine
in northern Transylvania, is sometimes
presented as the Shangri-La of all that
is quintessentially Romanian. But the mythical
Romanian peasant is having a hard time in a
country that remains predominantly agricultural
as it joins the European Union.
Far from the mass tourism of the Black Sea coast
or the castles that are said to have been the home
of Dracula, this green region with its deep-rooted
traditions has seen the arrival of a quite separate
race: the post-modern tourist, explains Raluca
Nagy. "Ten years ago, these tourists discovered
Prague; today they have their sights on Bucharest
or Sofia." She adds, "The ethno tourist is not
interested in getting a suntan, but in discovering
something new, and is fascinated and attracted by
all that is different."
She goes on, "The picture-book landscape of
Maramures and the myth of the true Romania,
somewhat erroneous given a history marked by
the arrival of the Hungarians and Ukrainians,
have made this region a success. In just a few
years, 'friendly' tourism based on traditional

hospitality has given way to a more commercial
Nagy adds, "The people of Maramures, often part-
time farmers, have turned to rural tourism. Some
of them, those who work abroad, have even put up
new buildings to welcome the visitors in greater
comfort than the traditional wooden houses. The
development of these sanitized pensiuni is, how-
ever, a threat to the very thing that attracts the
tourist to Maramures: its a.iiiii. il It could
e'ten ri\k di~sppearin- al!tneether"

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E< K

Encounters is one of those all-too-
rare initiatives for promoting
African creativity, an opportunity
for all those in South and North with a keen
interest in photography.
As with video, where digital technology is often
used to manipulate professional photographs,
fine art photography, expressive photography or,
simply, art photography are sectors where it is
difficult for Africans to reap any financial
rewards. The reason for this is that they are too
far away from the major publishing houses,
exhibition halls and distribution networks. This
also means that they have difficulties in meeting
fellow professionals and this makes the African
Photography Encounters all the more important.
Today, professional photography-related proj-
ects are very thin on the ground across the con-
tinent with the exception of South Africa, where
many artists and organizations operate. There's
some activity in Mali, Botswana, Gabon,
Zimbabwe and Tunisia, but that's about it.
For the 7th Encounters in Mali's capital, the
efforts involved in mounting, organising and
supervising the event relied heavily on Paris-
based experts working in cooperation with the
Maison Africaine de la Photographie in
Bamako. As one local visitor remarked, "we
used to watch them taking photographs of us,
now they help us to look at our own photo-
As part of the event, CULTURES FRANCE has
published a detailed 269-page catalogue, in
French and English, a unique guide to the dis-


:-s ~


From Top to bottom:
Fanie Jason (Afrique du Sud), Carters on the Way to the epping scrap yard,
Srie Cape Carting, Biennial of Photography, Bamako, 2005. Fane Jason
Samy Baloji (RDC), Gcamines 4, Srie Mmoire, Biennial of Photography, Bamako, 2006. c amy Baloji
Port of Bamako, a place of hectic activity where life is at its full intensity. Anne Sophie Costenoble


il w

humi tOes.mISifdu iwudahyP |.i

cover of what can only be termed a photo-
graphic record of cultural diversity. This is a
guide that will be of great use in the future, as
well as, a record of the event.
The objective of the theme for 2007,
"Inside/Outside the city", was to provide a vari-
ety of perspectives and produce revealing
images of love and peace. It is Africa, Europe,
America, the world, photographed by Africans.
An African city is a confusing labyrinthfor any
visitor looking for familiar bearings. Its rules
are invented as it goes along, depending on
where the wind blows. And it is the wind that
creates the city, which, in spite of everything,
works. Why? For it is made cr il. ,, and blood.
(Simon Njami, Curator General of the
Photography Encounters in Bamako)
The advantage of this type of event is that it
gives an opportunity for photographers to exhib-
it works of the highest standard side by side.
Selected by Simon Njami Curator, General of
the Photography Encounters and his associate,
Samuel Sidib, Director of Mali's National
Museum, exhibits from 16 African nations were
put on show. A specially prepared site in
Bamako was used as the venue where artists
brought together photographs and videos to cre-
ate an amazing series of presentations.
However, questions crop up when trying to pin
down the nationalities of exhibitors. Some of the
photographers at the exhibition live in London,
Paris and New York, only retuming to their
native countries from time to time. So what does
the term African photography now mean? Is it
really African? Is it more African than the pho-
tography of individuals of Western origin who
have spent half their lives in Africa and are com-
mitted to watching and discovering African life?
And what about African photographers who are
less well-off, who have no choice but to remain
in the land of their ancestors?

The Bamako Encounters exhibition was sup-
ported by the Jean-Paul Blachre Foundation,
named after its creator, who, from his artist's
residence in Apt, France, has spent many years
tuming the spotlight on the works of ground-
breaking African artists. In photography, he is
credited with the discovery of Sadou Dicko.
This award-winning photographer from Burkina
Faso won another prize this year, this time from
the Organisation Internationale de la
Francophonie (OIF).
Not to be outdone, Bamako's EU-sponsored
Cadre de Promotion pour la Formation en
Photographie (CFP), backed by the Brussels-
based Contraste Association, played host to a
joint-training scheme involving 18 trainees from
Mali and Belgium. This Africalia-sponsored ini-
tiative resulted in the creation of 200 photo-
graphs, all of which were exhibited and project-
ed in various parts of the city. At the same time,
the Cinma Numrique Ambulant took a digital
photographic studio around Bamako's markets
to record the festive atmosphere. Hundreds of
portraits of inhabitants were then connected via
a computer to landscapes from around the world.
This project was a huge success, especially when
images of local people were projected onto a
giant screen, with a background of the Eiffel
Tower, the Pyramids or the Great Wall of China.
The organizers also invited young photogra-
phers from Finland to show their work, creat-
ing an opportunity for photographers from dif-
ferent nations to exchange ideas and compare
* Mirko Popovitch Director of Africalia (Belgium)

Biennial of Photography, Bamako, 2007.
Afrique in visu /Baptiste de Ville d Avray
In the box
Biennial of Photography, Bamako 2007.
Afrique in visu/Baptiste de Ville d'Avray


s 1




and Development was established,
on 6 September 1996, to mark the
70th birthday of H.R.H. Prince
Claus, husband of Queen Beatrix of the
Netherlands. Since 1997 it awards artists,
thinkers and cultural organizations in Africa,
Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.
In 2007. the Prince Claus Fund has given the
first award to Faustin Linyekula for his over-
all commitment to the Congo, outstanding
choreography, his courageous return to his
country and his innovative stimulation of cul-
tural life, despite the instability and turbu-
lence that prevail.
The choreographer from Kisangani uses
movements, texts, images and sounds to

Publication Facts by Ars Aevi.
Courtesy of Ars Aevi

communicate and raise awareness of the
experience of living in the midst of a conflict
that has gripped his country for decades,
noted the jury honouring Linyekula in
December 2007. Linyekula describes himself
as a storyteller. His performances are strong
and feature avant-garde language.
For ten years now, the Prince Claus Fund has
attributed a prize of 100,000 to outstanding
individuals and organizations from Africa,
Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean in the
field of culture and development. Many indi-
viduals worldwide are invited to put names
forward and upon research, a restricted jury
selects a few candidates, among which a win-
ner is chosen and receives his or her award at
a ceremony held in the presence of Dutch roy-
alty in Amsterdam. In 2007, the Prince Claus
Award set out to honour artists and organisa-
tions working to counteract the destructive
power of conflict, promoting beauty, dia-
logue and respect, dignity and self-esteem in
the face of devastation.
Ten lesser prizes of 25,000 were given to,
inter alia, the theatre-producer and cultural
revolutionary, Augusto Boal (Brazil), the actor
and poet Patricia Ariza working in Colombia,
the Tanzanian cartoonist Gado, the artistic
group Ars Aevi (Bosnia and Herzegovina), the
Sudanese Writers Union (Sudan), and the
Radio Isanganiro founded in 2002 in Burundi
by a group of journalists. M


Cartoon by Gado
Courtesy of Gado

Tr)[1 71p

is a key component of its identity
and so public authorities have a
moral obligation and a duty to
ensure that the echos of the past are well and
truly safeguarded. Fully aware of this respon-
sibility to be keeper of the "voices" that once
were Cameroon, the country is now making
significant strides to ensure the legacy of the
past is preserved.
At a memorable General Assembly on
Culture, Cameroon's Ministry of Information
and Culture adopted a series of resolutions
and commitments to promote the viability of
the nation's heritage.'
However, it was back in 1980, in association
with the Office for Overseas Scientific and
Technological Research, and the University
Research Assistance Fund that the Ministry
decided to launch a wide-ranging heritage
inventory research programme. This initiative
paved the way for the creation of structures
which later became information, education,
training and research centres.2
As a result, Yaound, Douala and certain parts
of West Cameroon boast one or two museums,
art galleries and monuments and these have
assembled miscellaneous collections of natu-
ral resources (ethnography, local and regional
history, geography, natural history and the
visual arts). In addition, as part of its policy
for acquiring contemporary works, the
Ministry of Culture has launched competitions

in the field of creativity.
Despite activities already underway and the
wealth resources made available, the museum-
related network is still in an embryonic stage.
Across the country, only 15 museums are
actually operating (with over half in private
hands) and some of these hardly deserve such
a description.

> Complacency

Indeed a culture of complacency seems to
have crept into the administration of public
museums, despite all the resolutions that were
so enthusiastically agreed upon in the initial
stages and this has been exacerbated by on-
the-ground difficulties. Cramped conditions,
equipment shortages and tight budgets have
all affected the smooth management of the
museums. Other problems and setbacks
include climate control systems, effective edu-
cational services, the collection and transport
of exhibits and the creation of libraries with
specialist scientific and other specialities. Due

to these shortcomings, exhibits are often
exposed to wear and tear and are stored in less
than ideal conditions. In addition, the muse-
ums have had to struggle to recruit qualified
staff and consequently the system isseriously
lagging behind in terms of conservation and
restoration. As a whole, all these problems and
challenges sowed seeds of doubt about
whether there was any real point in creating
these sorts of institutions in Africa.
Fortunately, these misgivings were quickly
dispelled during a meeting of the International
Council of Museums (ICOM) in Ghana in
1991 (What Museums for Africa? Heritage in
the Future), which helped boost a museum
culture in Africa. Today, international agen-
cies are taking steps to help these countries
make a genuine effort to meet the challenges
they face. For Cameroon, it is up to the culture
professionals involved to put into practice rec-
ommendations for paving the way towards an
effective collection and conservation system;
a system that not only guarantees the nation's
cultural heritage but ensures that it is better
promoted and marketed to reach its target
audiences. M
*Art Historian.
Teacher at Yaound I University,
1 Proceedings of the General Assembly on Culture,
Yaound, Congress Palace, Ministry of Information
and Culture, 23-24 August 1991, pp 54-55
2 Bulletin Zamani, 1993, No5/6, p.8


W ith climate
change seem- .
ingly on every-
one's agenda
there's real concern that many of
the small, beautiful, faraway
islands in the Pacific and
Caribbean are in danger of disap-
pearing. And, as the earth warms
up, regions with temperate cli-
mates like Europe will have less
snow, reduced rainfall and
months when it is hot when it
used to be cold.
There's more. In countries where
there is no winter, it is now
extremely hot, almost too hot, all
the time and in some places it
has simply just stopped raining. That, of course, makes it difficult to grow
plants and find drinking water. It is rain that causes water to penetrate
deep into the earth; the water that appears when you tum on the tap.
Also there is now an increasing number of major disasters in which peo-
ple are killed: hurricanes, earthquakes, floods and erupting volcanoes. In
the North and South Poles, where there used to be enormous quantities of
ice in winter and summer, the ice is melting more quickly. When it melts
it means there is a lot more water in the seas.
This can be very serious in some places around the globe. Belgium and
Holland in Europe and particularly the small islands in the Pacific fiat
coral reefs that are only just above sea level. In one of these countries,
Kiribati (pronounced Kiribass) two of the small islands have already dis-
appeared under the sea. Although these islands were not inhabited, peo-
ple used to go there and it is said that when he was very young Prince
Charles, the Prince of Wales, had lunch on one of them. Not surprisingly,

on some of the small Kiribati
Islands the people are frightened.
In fact, some of the people from
this country as well as from
another country, the Marshall
Islands, have already had to go
and live on another small island
state in the region, called Niue.
Niue is lucky because it has
But the country in the Pacific peo-
ple speak about as most in danger
is Tuvalu. People say it will per-
haps be the first country to disap-
pear completely beneath the
waves if sea levels continue to
Radek Steska, 2007, Manifesta! rise. We visited Tuvalu. One
Africa e Mediterraneo
grandmother told us: "I will allow
my children and grandchildren to leave but I will stay here. It is here that
1 want to die." That is sad.
Children leam at school what must be done to help the country, such as
not wasting water, protecting the trees, and so on, but they also leam what
to do in the case of danger if the sea rises. But, of course, they do not
want to leave their homes. Susana, aged 9, told us : "I don't know what
we must do but I don't want to leave." Another girl, Tepula, said that she
will climb up into a tree and wait for the water to go down. A boy, Teisi,
wants to stay to watch over his country and Kanava, another boy, says he
will fill the sea to make a mountain.
And Kanava is not wrong. He thinks the same as the leaders of his coun-
try who want to build an artificial island that is higher. But they will need
a lot of money and materials. They think people and children everywhere
do not want their very beautiful little country to disappear and that every-
body will help them. H.G. M


J our say

lWords from

the Readers

Just full of joy that this very educative Magazine is back and looking
forward to reading about events in the ACP Countries again.

Thank you for issue number 1 of The Courier. After reading the publica-
tion, I welcome the new style.
Michel Baudouin,
professor of agronomy at the University of Gembloux (Belgium)
and expert on rural development

Congratulation for your magazine,
Kind regards
Pamla d'Authier
Direction des Relations Europennes et Internationales
i. ... pour l'Europe communautaire
(Montpellier France)

We are interested
in your point of view
and your reactions
to the articles.
So do tell us
what you think.

I am writing from the European Youth Forum (YFJ). We are happy to
know that 'The Courier ACP-EU' has been re-launched.
Angela Corbalan
Press & External Relations Coordinator of YFJ (Brussels Belgium)

Let me congratulate you on this revived publication which has always
proved extremely valuable to us in Uganda.
With thanks,
Michel Lejeune
Deputy executive Director NCHE
(Kampala Uganda)

Well come back. The Courier ACP-EU magazine is very educative on
ACP-EU countries. Accept my congratulations for your return to print
this magazine. Yours
Asagaya Jasper
(Yaounde Cameroon)

eail: i-e i i se: -

Calendar January May 2008

January 2008
> 22-23 Africa Private Sector Forum
organised by the African Union's
Department of Economic Affairs,
Addis Ababa
> 28-29 EU General Affairs and External
Relations Council, Brussels
> 31-2 Conference of African Union
Heads of State and Government,
Addis Ababa

february 2008
> 18 EU General Affairs and External
Relations Council, Brussels
> 20-22 UNEP -Global Ministerial
Environment Forum
10th Special Session, Monaco

march 2008
> 10-11 EU General Affairs and External
Relations Council, Brussels
> 15-20 ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary
Assembly, Ljubljana

> 17-20 UNCTAD -Conference on Trade
and Development
24th Special Session, Geneva

fpril 2008
> 28-29 EU General Affairs and External
Relations Council, Brussels

may 2008
> 16-17 EU-Latin America-Caribbean
Summit (EU-LAC), Lima
> 26-27 EU General Affairs and External
Relations Council, Brussels a

--- ---------------------------- I~



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Antigua and i i.i i ,- :l i,, ,I Barbados Belize Cuba Dominica Dominican
,-i.,,ii.i. "i.-i,,-i, i: i,, H i nii i aica Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint
..,. ,- ii.-, ,,-. i e Trinidad and Tobago



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Cook Islands Federated States of Micronesia Fiji Kiribati Marshall Islands Nauru Niue
Palau Papua New Guinea Samoa Solomon Islands Timor Leste Tonga Tuvalu Vanuatu


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Austria ,-i7 r,i r 8ii i ,i ./p L i I 11111 i France
German ''. ,I r i i Ir-, I Malta
Netherlands Poland Portugal : '"" ", i I-,-, United

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*' t

The lists of countries published by The Courier do not prejudice the status of these countries and territories now or in the future. The Courier uses maps from a variety of sources.
Their use does not implv recognition of anv particular boundaries nor prejudice the status of anv state or territory.

*-r (I Q~ i,



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