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Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation

Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation

France’s bilateral credits to the DRC (via the Ministry of Foreign Affairs/AFD) have gradually recovered since the end of the civil war.

The visit to Kinshasa by Minister Delegate for Cooperation Brigitte Girardin on 24 March 2007 saw the signing of a five-year Framework Partnership Agreement (FPA) for the 2007-2011 period, focusing France’s intervention on the fields of education, environmental protection, biodiversity and health. Other initiatives were pursued in areas such as governance (support for financial administrations and establishment of the rule of law), the teaching of French (the DRC is the world’s biggest French-speaking country and a €5 million French language project was launched in 2008), cultural diversity and support for civil society.

The Presidential visit of October 2012, accompanied by a densely-packed bilateral agenda, provided an opportunity to announce a number of new assistance projects: Minister of Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius signed two new agreements on the financing of aid projects for a total of €250,000.

YaminaBenguigui, Minister Delegate for Francophony, announced other commitments for the benefit of the people of the DRC: €450,000 as part of the HCR and €1 million in food aid. She also signed an agreement with the NGO Heal Africa, which cares for children with HIV/AIDS, to provide funding of €200,000.

Francophony, Teaching, Culture: Kinshasa 2012

In October 2012, Kinshasa played host to the Francophone Summit, an event key to our action in this area.

The flagship project of French cooperation, known as SESAM, is designed to support fluency in and use of the French language in the DRC. The €5 million programme (over five years) aims to establish a permanent structure for the teaching and dissemination of French, through the production of teaching tools, the creation of decentralised teaching institutes and the setting up of regional language and culture hubs built around Franco-Congolese alliances and French cultural centres and spaces home to cultural relays (schools, radio stations, libraries, etc.).

The DRC has two cultural centres: the Halle de la Gombe in Kinshasa and the Halle de l’Etoile in Lubumbashi.

The Lycée René Descartes school in Kinshasa was founded in 1964, and is certified by the Agency for French Education Abroad (AEFE). The Lycée Blaise Pascal in Lubumbashi reopened in September 2009.

Both schools provide classes from kindergarten level to the end of secondary education for a total of some 850 pupils.
A substantial network of Alliance Française centres, formed as associations under local law, is in the process of reactivation with a view to covering numerous urban areas across the country.

Updated on 25.09.13

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