About

General

European Programme of SID and is executed by the Netherlands Chapter with a mandate from the Governing Council of SID International. Main activities of the SID European Programme are:
• Establishing/strengthening focal points in at least 15 MS with a mandate to raise public and political awareness as well as to help to define the development cooperation policies of these countries
• Strengthening network of concerned Parliamentarians and Policy makers concerned with European development cooperation and policy, and bridging it to networks of academic institutions and NGOs
• Conferences and briefing sessions: a) at European/International level with participants from 25 EU countries and from the world of Parliamentarians, Academic Institutions and NGOs, b) national level conferences and roundtables for parliamentarians and policy makers
• Information exchange via electronic Newsletter for Network of European Parliamentarians for Development

(Informal) Network of European Parliamentarians for Development

For over 3 years now, the European Programme of SID has been concerned with creation and strengthening of the European Network of Parliamentarians for Development cooperation. The objective of this is to ensure that there are:
– parliamentarian focal points in (eventually) all of the 27 EU Member States, especially focussing on NMS where there is less tradition of parliamentary involvement in matters of Development cooperation and policy.
– connection and cooperation/networking between parliamentary peers in MSs and as well as their counterparts in the EP
– the awareness raising (via Newsletter, workshops, conferences, etc) on development cooperation issues on European level.

Every year SID Europena Programme has organised at least one activity (conference or a briefing on topical issues regarding European Development Cooperation and Policy) for example: ’European Union and the South: A New Era. The international responsibility of an enlarged European Union’’, conference for policy and decision makers from NMS, Vienna November 2003; SID/EDC 2010 International Conference “European Development Cooperation: towards policy renewal and a new commitment’’ , The Hague 27-28 September; Briefing session for Parliamentarians on the new Development Policy Statement (DPS), “Will Europe make a difference? Future of the European Development Policy”, 1 September 2005, Brussels.

In 2006 SID European Programme was mainly busy with fact-finding missions to new member states (NMS), where SID EP representatives met with representatives of parliamentary committees dealing with issues of development cooperation. Attached to the above meetings were also meetings with heads of new international development departments in the ministries of foreign affairs and representatives of UNDP offices and come civil society organisations. All of them have confirmed our believe that a group which has mainly been left out of the awareness raising process about the development issues in Europe in the NMS are the parliamentarians. We are now even more determined to address this problem by focusing on the awareness and information needs of the NMS MPs as identified by themselves, as well as the other major stakeholders in these countries.

Since then beginning of 2007 year SID EP have been busy with getting together a group of very active parliamentarians (both MPs and MEPs) in the field of international development in order to form the

Task Force of European Network of Parliamentarians for Development. This idea has been a part of the SID European Programme since the beginning. However it has been furthered following the Joining Committee Meeting on European Development Policy between the members of the Development Committee of the EP and those (or the Foreign Affairs Committee) of the Member States respectively which took place in the EP on 4th October 2006 and the meeting in Helsinki the week before that. In Brussels meeting it was reiterated by a number of parliamentarians that there was a need for having such meetings repeated regularly and to accompany them with a strong network of European parliamentarians (both MPs and MEPs) interested in Development Cooperation. Based on that European Programme of the Society for International Development organised a meeting were a core group of some 15 parliamentarians were invited (both MEPs and MPs) to act as a Task Force for the (informal) Network of European Parliamentarians for Development.

The first meeting of the Task Force took place in Brussels on 5th February 2007 and among other points it was agreed that there should be a good relationship establish between the Task Force of Parliamentarians and the Commission, that the Task Force should also serve as the advise body for the type research, information and knowledge that is needed by parliamentarians in order to further the parliamentarians involvement and support for the European Development cooperation and policy.

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