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Spanish PM Pedro Sánchez loses parliament’s investiture vote

Three months after the general elections were held in April 2019, the Spanish socialist workers' party (PSOE) of acting Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez did not manage to reach a governing agreement with the left-wing Podemos party. As a consequence, Sánchez was unable to form a new government and lost the investiture session at the congress of deputies.

Negotiations between the PSOE and Podemos will continue till 23 September 2019, until the next investiture vote deadline. If no governing agreement is reached by then, current prime minister elects will not be appointed and another general election will be held in Spain by November 2019

News article – El País (in Spanish)

Spain

Spain to support emergency health programs in DRC

Spain’s implementing agency for international development has approved an emergency agreement with the Spanish global health NGO Farmamundi to guarantee health coverage of primary health care and reproductive sexual health in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This intervention will target roughly 8,000 internally displaced persons, specifically female survivors of sexual and gender-based violence.

Press release- AECID (in Spanish)

Spain Global health

Spain to fund water and sanitation development in Ecuador

Spanish prime minister Pedro Sánchez’s cabinet approved a US$40 million contribution to a water sanitation initiative in Quito, Ecuador. The funding, a total of US$221 million, will be provided by the foreign ministry’s Spanish Development Fund (FONPRODE) to the Program for Drinking Water and Sewage in Quito.

In addition to Spain’s FONPRODE, the Inter-American Development Bank (IABD) and the Public Metropolitan Water Company of Quito will also support the project, with contributions of US$87.1 million and US$93.9 million, respectively.

Press release – AECID (in Spanish)

Spain Global health

Spain will disburse US$20 million to multilateral organizations

The government of Spanish prime minister Pedro Sánchez approved various voluntary contributions to development-related multilateral organizations to be disbursed by AECID, the foreign ministry’s implementing agency, in 2019.

With a total amount of €18 million (US$20 million) allocated, these contributions include:

  • €3 million (US$3 million) to the United Nations Children’s Fund;
  • €2 million (US$3 million) to the United Nations Population Fund;
  • €2 million (US$3 million) to the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women;
  • €2 million (US$2 million) to the United Nations Development Program;
  • €2 million (US$2 million) to the World Health Organization;
  • €1 million (US$1 million) to the Food and Agriculture Organization;
  • €750,000 (US$845,000) to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean;
  • €700,000 (US$789,000) to the United Nations Environment Program;
  • €600,000 (US$676,000) to the International Labour Organization; and
  • €550,000 (US$620,000) to the Pan-American Health Organization.  

Press release – AECID (in Spanish)

Spanish CSOs hold first national debate on Agenda 2030

On July 3, 2019, the first National Multifactor Forum on the 2030 Agenda, jointly promoted by the ODS Alliance (UNICEF-Spanish Committee, OXFAM Intermón, and WWF) and the Spanish Pact Network was held in Madrid. The forum was attended by representatives of the Spanish government, NGOs, social organizations, think tanks, and academics working in the field of sustainable development affairs.

The stakeholder meeting was aimed at aligning points of view around the 2030 Agenda and setting the basis for the Spanish national strategy for sustainable development. The main topics of discussion included matters relating to GDP, inequality, and food production and consumption.

Press release – REDS (in Spanish)

Spain Agriculture

Spain to continue supporting water and sanitation programs in Latin America

The acting cabinet of prime minister Pedro Sánchez approved a €5 million (US$6 million) contribution to the Spanish Cooperation Fund for Water and Sanitation (FCAS) in 2019. According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, this new funding will serve to manage, monitor and evaluate up to 78 programs implemented by the FCAS in Latin America.

Created by the Spanish development agency AECID in 2009, the FCAS aims to provide water and sanitation facilities to developing and middle-income countries in Latin America. The FCAS accounts for an overall financial portfolio of €1.65 billion (US$1.9 billion).

Press release – Cooperación Española, MAEUEC (in Spanish)

Spain

Oxfam report: Spain's ODA fell 56% from 2008 to 2018

The Spanish development NGO Oxfam Intermón released its annual report 'La Realidad de la Ayuda' ('Reality of assistance') analyzing the most relevant trends of Spain’s development policy. Secretary of state for international cooperation and Ibero-America, Juan Pablo de Laiglesia, and Spanish development agency AECID’s director, Aina Calvo, attended to the report launch event in Madrid along with other politicians and NGO representatives. 

Based on the latest figures of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Oxfam Intermón found that Spain’s ODA has dropped to €2.2 billion (US$2.5 billion), down to just 0.20% of its gross national income in 2008. This represents a cumulative cutback of 55.7% in the last decade. Spain is the country with the biggest budgetary cuts in ODA spending; its cuts are five times greater than the donor in second place.

On the day following the launch event, Oxfam Intermón published an op-ed in El País calling for a “re-foundation of Spain’s development cooperation”. It underlines the importance of resuming development financing, of ongoing increases to ODA spending, and of reforming the institutional architecture of the Spanish development policy in order to align it with the new challenges surrounding the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 

Press release – Oxfam Intermón (in Spanish)

Oxfam Op-ed – El País (in Spanish)

Spain

El País holds a debate on the Global Fund with development experts

Three global health and development experts-- the Global Fund’s director for external affairs, Françoise Vanni, the Barcelona Institute for Global Health's (ISGlobal’s) director for analysis, Gonzalo Fanjul, and the Elcano Royal Institute’s senior researcher, Iliana Olivié-- discussed the Global Fund's efforts to fight global outbreaks of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.

The debate was televized as part of a series 'Sustainable Development Dialogues', video interviews organized by the Spanish newspaper El País and the foreign affairs think tank Elcano Royal Institute. This interview focused on the importance of global health multilaterals and the need for Spain to rejoin the Global Fund as a donor. Spain has not contributed to the fund since 2011.

News article, video debate – El País (in Spanish)

Spain assumes presidency of UNOCHA's donor support group until June 2020

From July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020, Spain will hold the presidency of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs' (UNOCHA’s) Donor Support Group (ODSG).

Established in 1998, ODSG brings together 29 top UNOCHA donors to make policy recommendations on management, budgetary, and financial questions related to humanitarian assistance. The Spanish development agency, AECID, has announced that Spain’s ODSG presidency will prioritize three objectives: the ensurance that no humanitarian goes unaddressed; the strengthening of gender-based humanitarian operations; and fostering of an effective, coordinated response against natural disasters specifically.

Press release – AECID (in Spanish)

Spain

ISGlobal gathers world malaria experts at Barcelona seminar

The Spanish global health think tank and research center Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), in collaboration with Harvard University and the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, held its annual course 'Science of Eradication: Malaria', from June 9 to June 14, 2019 in Barcelona. Over 50 participants from 24 different countries including researchers, public health professionals and advocates took part in the seminar, which was chaired by the World Health Organization’s head of the malaria program, Pedro Alonso.

Press release – ISGlobal (in Spanish)