APD (Aide Publique au Développement or Public Economic Development Assistance) constitutes an essential component of France’s external action. Its volume, among the most significant in European countries and, in relative value, among G8 backers, stands as witness.
The sector strategic orientations of France’s public economic development assistance policy and geographic priorities are defined by the CICID (Comité interministériel de la Coopération internationale et du Développement or French Interministerial Committee for International Cooperation and Development).
Implementing the APD involves three ministerial partners: The Foreign and European Affairs Ministry (MAEE), the Economy, Industry, and Employment Ministry (MINEIE), the Immigration, Integration, National Identity, and Interdependent Development Ministry (MIIIDS) and a primary operator, the AFD (Agence Française de Dévelopment or French Economic Development Agency).
Signed from 2005 onwards, the DCPs (Documents Cadres de Partenariat or Partnership Framework Documents) are agreements discussed between France and its partners defining the focus sectors for 5 years for French aid in each country in the ZSP (Zone de Solidarité Prioritaire or Priority Solidarity Zone) and in other sub-Saharan African countries. They are the application of France’s action plan in favor of assistance effectiveness.
Within the MAEE, the DGM (Direction Générale de la Mondialisation, du Développement et des Partenariats or Globalization, Economic Development, and Partnerships General Directorate) is responsible for representing the Ministry in the CICID’s joint secretary’s office, supervising the AFD, partnerships with multilateral and regional organizations, determining cooperation’s actions regarding culture, higher education, research, audiovisual, new information and communications technologies, and democratic governance. Other MAEE departments participating in drafting France’s economic development policy: The United Nations and International Organizations Department, the European Union Department, and geographic Departments. The AFD is responsible for implementing actions in the education, health, agriculture and food safety, infrastructures, water and water treatment, production, environment, and biodiversity sectors and supporting non-governmental organizations.
Alongside this institutional system, numerous French civil society actors and regional authorities participate in economic development cooperation. A large number of ISOs (International Solidarity Organizations) develop advocacy activities and promote awareness of economic development issues in France, as well as economic development projects in the field, in partner countries. There are also associations uniting migrants. Townships, departments, and regions, in their fields of competence, are also very important actors for informing French citizens and for mobilizing their expertise to benefit their counterpart authorities in the South. The list of these other actors also includes various research institutes specialized in economic development issues, as well as corporate foundations with an increasing role and who have become, in recent years, full-fledged actors for economic development.
Updated on 08.10.09