The EU considers the FfD Conference to be a historical opportunity to make progress towards the achievement of the Millennium Development goals for poverty reduction and the other internationally agreed development targets in a holistic manner.
The EU stresses the fact that the Monterrey Consensus is based on a spirit of strengthened partnership in which developing countries take primary responsibility for their own development, ensuring democracy and the rule of law, while developed countries actively support them. In this respect, it gives primary importance to the Doha Development Agenda (according to UNCTAD and IMF statistics, the EU is the most important trading partner for Least Developed Countries absorbing about 52% of their exports in 2000), which represents unprecedented growth and development opportunities, which together with Monterrey and the Johannesburg Summit will contribute to a Global Deal based on those principles.
The EU Heads of State and Government committed themselves on March 15 16 in Barcelona to an average 0.39% ODA target by 2006 towards the 0.7% target and Member Countries not having reached this level individually will strive to reach at least 0.33% ODA/GNI by 2006. This represents an additional 7 billion USD by 2006, which in a low growth scenario will make available at least some 20 billion USD extra over the period 2000 2006. It is worthwhile to note that the EU represents more than 50% of all ODA worldwide, including humanitarian aid, totaling 25.4 billion USD in 2000.
The EU has also agreed upon the following:
- The immediate implementation of DAC recommendations on untying of aid addressed to Least Developed Countries and to continue discussions in view of further untying of bilateral aid,
- To improve the capacity of developing countries in trade (e.g. the EU has already committed itself by pledging more than 60% of E 14 million at the WTO Pledging Conference in Geneva 11 March).
- To promote the setting up of an international task force, open to broad participation, to move forward the discussions on Global Public Goods,
- To further explore innovative sources of financing,
- To influence the reform of the International Financial System (IFS) by combating the abuses of financial globalisation,
- To strengthen the voice of developing countries in international economic decision-making,
- To enhance coherence between the UN, International Financial Institutions and WTO,
- To examine ways of debt relief other than those in practice at present for the Least Developed Countries.