Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, visited the headquarters of "Coordination SUD (Solidarité, Urgence, Développement)" on November 6.
This was the first visit by a minister of foreign affairs to this key partner. This visit formed part of the meaningful dialogue that we maintain with civil society actors in the area of cooperation and international solidarity, notably within the framework of the National Council for Development and International Solidarity – the last session of which Jean-Yves Le Drian chaired on September 14 – and the “humanitarian advisory group” which links the ministry with the main French NGOs.
Jean-Yves Le Drian talked for more than an hour with officials from "Coordination SUD," which brings together 162 NGOs and NGO groups, for which it provides a voice to the French government and within the European and international consultation forums. The discussions notably focused on the contribution of NGOs to the implementation of development and humanitarian projects in post-crisis situations, as well on the goal set by President Macron to increase our official development assistance to 0.55% of GNI by 2022.
In this context, Jean-Yves Le Drian reaffirmed his desire to see an increase in the share of assistance channeled through civil society organizations as well as the share of assistance for humanitarian and emergency operations, in addition to the direct aid from the French authorities and grant-funded projects carried out by the French Development Agency. Financing allocated by the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs for crisis management and recovery will be increased to €86.3 million in 2018 (an increase of 20%), including €30 million for the Emergency Response Fund and €35 million for food assistance.
Jean-Yves Le Drian made humanitarian issues a priority of the French presidency of the UN Security Council in October, notably through an initiative on the protection of humanitarian and medical personnel in conflict zones.