2015 was the European Year for Development; a pivotal year for development and the last year for achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the year in which the major decisions were taken on what their replacements will look like.
The EU is the biggest donor of the official development assistance (ODA) in the world. Four years after the adoption of the Agenda for Change (the European Commission's blueprint to refocus its development aid to make sure that it reaches those sectors and countries which need it most), 2015 was the ideal time for donors and stakeholders to come together to look at what has been achieved so far, and most importantly, what still needs to be done.
Despite the current economic downturn, support for development remains high across the EU, with some 85% of EU citizens saying that Europe should continue helping developing countries despite the economic crisis, according to a recent Eurobarometer survey.
The European Year for Development 2015 was a key opportunity to raise awareness of development across Europe and to show European taxpayers know that every euro spent on development benefits both people living in some of the world's poorest countries, and EU citizens themselves.
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker launched the EYD2015 at a high-level opening ceremony in Riga on January 9. The EYD 2015 had a packed calendar of events at EU, national, regional and local level – everyone was involved.
MEUSAC was nominated by Government as the national coordinator of the European Year. MEUSAC held various stakeholders' meeting with a number of NGOs' representatives and other stakeholders to discuss the objectives of the Year.
As the national contact point, MEUSAC’s role during the European Year for Development was that of coordinating events on twelve themes, one for each month, centred around development. Activities ranged from a conference and a business breakfast, to debates and a media campaign.
The European Year was officially launched in Malta on January 15, at the MEUSAC offices in Valletta.
For the official website of the European Year for Development click here.
End of Year Message - Fernando Frutuoso de Melo
Opening of the European Year for Development 2015
MEUSAC feature about the European Year for Development