Minister for Foreign Affairs Kurz: “Austria contributes EUR 3m to new EU-aid programme for Africa”

New EU-fund to provide a perspective for people in Africa and help avoid fleeing

Vienna, 10 November 2015 - On the occasion of the establishment of the EU-trust-fund, which aims at combating the reasons for migration and flight in Africa, against the backdrop of the EU-summit in La Valletta on 12 November, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sebastian Kurz underlines the necessity that Europe provides suitable answers to the challenges posed by the current refugee crisis. Austria will support the fund with EUR 3m from the Austrian Development Agency’s (ADA) budget.

“This is about together securing peace, stability and economic development in the regions affected by crises and war”, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sebastian Kurz underlined before the summit. “If people have perspectives for a future in their home country, they will make use of them. The new trust-fund for Africa now provides an additional instrument to even faster and more efficiently improve the situation of the people in the three most important countries of origin and transit of refugees from Africa. Right now it is important to open up an economic perspective for them, so that they will not be forced to leave their home.”

The most important goals of the EU-fund are to provide perspectives for youths in Africa as well as to facilitate improvements in the areas of food security, of migration management and good governance. These funds are foremost to be used for focus countries of the Austrian Development Cooperation at the Horn of Africa to further strengthen the resilience and thus the stability of single regions: “Together with our partner countries we already were able to achieve a lot and have improved the situation of hundreds of thousands of farmers in North Gondar, Ethiopia. Still there is a great lot to be done, as the effects of climate change pose a great challenge to the small farmers in developing countries”, Martin Ledolter, the Austrian Development Agency’s CEO.

The fund, which will take up its work immediately, already disposes of EUR 1.8b, a sum that will be further increased by contributions like the Austrian one. Austria stands for all measures to be in full coherence with human rights and for a special focus on the strengthening of the resilience of African communities and their institutions against crises and unforseen events like natural catastrophes”, Sebastian Kurz closed.