St. Kitts and Nevis gets assurance of continued support from the European Union

St. Kitts and Nevis’ Prime Minister the Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil Douglas (left) and new Head of Delegation at the European Union in Barbados His Excellency Mikael, Barfod. (Photo by Erasmus Williams)

BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, NOVEMBER 14TH 2012 (CUOPM) – St. Kitts and Nevis will continue to benefit from the European Development Fund (EDF).

During discussions between St. Kitts and Nevis’ Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas and the European Union’s new Head of Delegation, His Excellency Mikael Barfod, it was noted that key projects under the 10th EDF Caribbean Regional Indicative Programme and Intra-ACP are the Regional Technical Cooperation Facility, the Regional Private Sector Development Programme (Caribbean Export), Support for the OECS Economic Union and Trade Development, Support for CSME and CARICOM Economic Integration and the Economic Partnership Agreement Capacity Building towards the support of the implementation of the National Adaptation Strategy following the closure of the sugar industry in 2005.

St. Kitts and Nevis has doubled its exports to the European Union buoyed by increased exports of electronic parts to Germany over the past 3 years despite successive changes in the EU market regime, and import policies that have severely affected the terms of trade. This has been a stark change to the previous 3 years which marked a decline in exports.

The EU is presently conducting a comprehensive review of its development policy in the lead up to its next Multi-Annual Financial Framework 2014-2020. The new budget proposals will support the Commission’s “new approach – the Agenda for Change-to focus EU aid in fewer sectors supporting democracy, human rights and good governance and creating inclusive sustainable growth.”

Under the new principle of “differentiation,” the EU will allocate a greater proportion of funds/aid to regions and countries that it deems as being the most in need, including fragile states. Countries that can generate enough resources to ensure their own development will no longer receive bilateral grant aid and will instead benefit from new forms of partnership; they will continue to receive funds through thematic and regional programmes. This will be complemented by different innovative cooperation modalities such as the blending of grants and loans.

It has to be noted that the EU categorizes the OECS Member States as upper middle income countries thus the theory of differentiation would apply.

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