THE G8 GLENEAGLES COMMITMENTS
47. The G8
has made a number of commitments on Africa stretching back to
the Kananaskis Summit in 2002 at which the Africa Action plan
was adopted. The Plan defined a new partnership between G8 countries
and those of Africa and set out specific commitments in support
of NEPAD. Under the
Presidency of the United Kingdom the G8 Summit in Gleneagles in
July 2005 reaffirmed the partnership with Africa in support of
Africa's development and agreed to double aid for Africa by 2010.
48. The G8 also approved an agreement earlier
in the year by Finance Ministers
to cancel 100 per cent of outstanding debts of eligible Heavily
Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC).
49. The United Kingdom Government have taken
the challenge of monitoring the G8 commitments seriously. They
have, since January 2006, published monthly updates on a Gleneagles
Implementation Plan which sets out the milestones which need to
be met to deliver the commitments agreed by the G8.
The Department for International Development also recently published
a report setting out the United Kingdom's contribution to implementation
of the Commission for Africa recommendations and the Gleneagles
commitments on poverty.
This report recognises that Africa must lead its own development
and provide effective governance whilst stating that the United
Kingdom Government stands ready to be a partner. The report acknowledges
the commitments made by the EU but does not comment directly on
implementation of the EU Strategy. Following on from this, a Department
for International Development (DfID) White Paper is expected to
be published in the Summer of 2006 setting out a plan to translate
the promises of 2005 into better lives for people in poorer countries.
Summary of the Gleneagles Commitments
A doubling of aid by 2010an extra $50 billion
worldwide and $25 billion for Africa;
Writing-off immediately the debts of 18 of the world's
poorest countries, most of which are in Africa. This is worth
$40 billion now, and as much as $55 billion as more countries
Writing off $17 billion of Nigeria's debt, in the
biggest single debt deal ever;
A commitment to end all export subsidies. A date
for this, probably 2010, should be agreed at the World Trade Organisation's
Ministerial in December. The G8 have also committed to reducing
domestic subsidies, which distort trade;
Developing countries will "decide, plan and
sequence their economic policies to fit with their own development
strategies, for which they should be accountable to their people";
As close to universal access to HIV/AIDS treatments
as possible by 2010;
Funding for treatment and bed nets to fight malaria,
saving the lives of over 600,000 children every year;
Full funding to eradicate Polio from the world;
By 2015 all children will have access to good quality,
free and compulsory education and to basic health care, free where
a country chooses to provide it; and
Up to an extra 25,000 trained peacekeeping troops,
helping the Africa Union to better respond to security challenges
50. The G8 at Gleneagles identified the Africa
Partnership Forum (APF) as the key body to track the implementation
of its commitments on the basis of an action plan.
The Africa Partnership Forum
The APF was formed as a result of the formation of
the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) in 2001.
At that time the G8 leaders decided to appoint a committee of
high-level personal representatives to work with the NEPAD steering
committee to develop a detailed, implementable Plan of Action
in support of NEPAD. This resulted in the G8 Action Plan which
was presented at Kananaskis. The committee developed into the
APF members include the G8 partners as well as 11
other countries including the Nordic countries and the Netherlands.
These countries account for some 98 per cent of ODA to Africa.
The President of the European Commission is a member. The Forum
also includes personal representatives of the heads of five key
international institutions: the IMF, the OECD, the UN the World
Bank and the WTO. Finally, it includes the African members of
the NEPAD Heads of State and Government Implementation Committee
(HSGIC) as well as the heads of the AU recognised Regional Economic
Communities, the Head of the African Development Bank and the
heads of state or government of Africa's principal industrialised
The Forum is a means of discussing and monitoring
at a senior political level policy issues, strategy and priorities
in support of Africa's development.
One of its key aims is to establish a Joint Action Plan bringing
together the commitments that African countries and Africa's development
partners have made to address the continent's development needs.
Informed by the Joint Action Plan, the Forum will monitor progress
and identify priorities for action as well as who will be responsible
for implementation to facilitate delivery of the commitments made.
The Forum is due to next meet in the United Kingdom in October
2006 where an annual progress report will be presented.
51. The Forum's terms of reference state that
it should avoid setting up any new bureaucracy or institutions
and that it should not duplicate the work of other fora.
Its remit is very much limited to strategic thinking and the sharing
of information between its partners. It cannot deliver on the
various commitments made by its partners, only monitor and review
52. Although the EU Strategy for Africa brings
together the institutions of the European Community and the Member
States, the institutions themselves have the capacity to fulfil
many of the commitments on development contained within the Strategy.
Moreover, the EU also has a much broader remit on, and capacity
for, peace keeping and security. It is this capacity which potentially
renders the Strategy more concrete than other sets of promises
made by the international community. Unlike the Forum, the EU
can, and must, actively engage in Africa in order to deliver on
the promises made.
53. The EU Commission's participation in the
Africa Partnership Forum should be used to ensure that unnecessary
duplication of efforts by its members and the EU is avoided.
54. Through its member states, the Forum should
work with the EU, particularly in seeking to formulate complementary
policies and ensure that their activities are carried out in a
co-ordinated fashion avoiding unnecessary duplication.