Policy Updates

Each week, Donor Tracker's team of country-based experts bring you the most important policy and funding news across issue areas in the form of Policy Updates.

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Civil 7 asks G7 to take concrete action for more peaceful future

April 14, 2024 | Italy, UK, France, Canada, Japan, US, Germany, EUI, Agriculture, Nutritious Food Systems | Share this update

On April 14, 2024, the C7 published a statement ahead of the G7 Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Capri from April 17-19, 2024, where the group called on the foreign ministers to take concrete action to promote human rights as well as the common interests of humanity and the planet.

The C7 advocated that the G7 ministers reaffirm their commitment to developing long-term peace-building strategies that address persistent structural challenges at the basis of conflicts, ensure food security even in fragile settings, and address a profound transformation of food systems. The group also called upon their governmental counterparts to ensure safe and regular migration channels and commit to protecting migrant rights.

C7 Statement to the G7 Foreign Ministers

France to host Nutrition for Growth Summit in March 2025

March 28, 2024 | France, Nutrition, Nutritious Food Systems, Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health, Global Health, WASH & Sanitation | Share this update

On March 28, 2024, France announced it will host the next edition of the Nutrition for Growth Summit in Paris on March 27 and 28, 2025.

The summit aims to mobilize the international community, including private actors and civil society, in favor of nutrition and to achieve the UN SDGs.The French Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated in the announcement that malnutrition problems are worsening worldwide, including undernutrition, food deficiencies and obesity.

France announced its continued commitment to nutrition through its international strategy for food security, nutrition, and sustainable agriculture from 2019-2024. It highlighted concrete actions to improve the nutrition of vulnerable populations, including food assistance, the Muskoka Initiative on Maternal and Child Health, and the actions of the AFD in the health, agriculture, and WASH sectors.

Press release - Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in French)

EU provides US$290 million for social services in Latin America, Caribbean

March 21, 2024 | Sweden, France, Spain, Germany, EUI, Global Health | Share this update

On March 21, 2024, the EU announced a contribution of EUR268 million (USS$290 million) at the EU - LAC High-Level Event on Inclusive Human Development and Equitable Access to Health Products.

Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Uprilainen announced the investment, made in cooperation with France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Spain, and Sweden. The finance aims to mobilize EUR1 billion (US$1 billion) to support access to basic social services and rights and increase the transparency and accountability of government agencies.

The contribution was made in line with broader :abbrEU - CELAC cooperation, which aims to mobilize over EUR45 billion (US$49 billion) from 2024-2027 to support the SDGs and other efforts in the region.

Press release - EU Commission

France allocates additional US$3 million for biodiversity, Amazon basin

March 21, 2024 | France, Climate, Agriculture | Share this update

On March 21, 2024, the French Ministry of Finance and Economy announced a contribution by FFEM and Conservation International of EUR2.5 million (US$3 million) to support biodiversity and respond to climate related crises in Amazonia.

The support is in addition to the previous commitment of EUR13 million (US$14 million) provided by the French Treasury to the region. It marked the first government funding entirely dedicated to safeguarding the Earth's vital reserves, which are crucial areas containing irrecoverable carbon stores and biodiversity in ecosystems like forests, mangroves, and peatlands. The reserves are pivotal in mitigating the most dramatic effects of climate change.

The project is an example of the Alliance for the Conservation of Rainforests that France helped to launch in 2019 with a threefold strategy: preserving, restoring and sustainably managing forests and their ecosystems. To achieve these objectives, the project is slated to collaborate with governments and with the Indigenous peoples and local communities who live in and are from the forest.

FFEM is dedicated to the global environment preservation through the co-financing of innovative pilot environmental projects in developing countries. It supports initiatives that generate local environmental, social and economic benefits. Created in 1994 by the French government, FFEM has co-financed 400 projects totaling EUR500 million (US$542 million) in grants, 70% of which are located in Africa and the Mediterranean region.

Press release - Ministry of Economy and Finance (in French)

Team Europe launches health partnerships at EU-AU event

March 20, 2024 | EUI, Sweden, France, Spain, Netherlands, Germany, Global Health | Share this update

On March 20, 2024, the EU and the Belgian Council presidency announced a joint contribution of EUR14 million (US$15 million) for the African Medicines Agency and launched three global health partnership programs.

The support, announced at the high-level event on EUAU partnership on Global Health for equitable access, comprised EUR10 million (US$11 million) from the Commission and EUR4 million (US$4 million) from Belgium. The support aims to advance the establishment of the African Medicines Agency, particularly as an end to strengthening vaccine production and health innovation.

In addition, the event marked the launch of three Team Europe initiatives on:

  • Sustainable Health Security, which aims to increase PPR among African partner countries, with a specific focus on AMR and other infectious diseases, and will receive EUR128 million (US$129 million) from the 2021-2027 budget;
  • Support to Public Health Institutes in Africa, which aims to bolster UHC and reduce health access inequalities and received an allocation of EUR50 million (US$54 million) from 2024-2027; and
  • Digital Health, focusing on reducing health disparities and advancing UHC and PPR through technological and practical innovation, which received EUR87 million (US$94 million) from 2024-2027.
Press release - EU CommissionPress release - EU Commission

France publishes AI Commission report

March 14, 2024 | France, Global Health, Climate | Share this update

On March 14, 2024, the French AI Commission delivered a report to French President Emmanuel Macron, containing 25 recommendations for France to take advantage of the technological revolution of AI.

France announced in November 2023 that it will host the AI Safety Summit in December 2024.

The report includes objectives to be led by the Ministry of Higher Education and Research, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Europe and the Ministry of Health on:

  • Making France a pioneer of AI for the planet by reinforcing environmental transparency, research into low-impact models, and utilizing AI in the service of energy and environmental transitions;
  • Structuring a coherent and concrete diplomatic initiative aimed at establishing a global governance of AI;
  • Facilitating data flow, sharing of practices, and evaluation to leverage the benefits of AI in healthcare, improving the provision of care and the daily lives of healthcare professionals; and
  • Encouraging individual use, large-scale experimentation, and evaluation of AI tools to strengthen the public education service and improve the daily lives of educational teams.
Press release - Elysée (in French)

French NGOs advocate for new taxation instruments

March 11, 2024 | France | Share this update

On March 11, 2024, a dozen French civil society leaders signed an op-ed advocating for new tax instruments in place of further budget cuts.

The representatives, which included Christophe Robert from Fondation Abbé Pierre and Najat Vallaud-Belkacem from ONE, argue in an opinion piece for a tax on speculation using the FTT.

The article noted the rising financing needs both domestically and internationally, including those for climate and development. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, an additional 124 million people have been living in extreme poverty since 2020, particularly in Africa.

The authors noted a European Commission study estimates that such a tax could raise EUR57 billion (US$62 billion) a year. They also suggested that several other taxes should be implemented at the European level, including a broader package of measures to establish fair European taxation: a tax on share buybacks, a tax on windfall profits of banks and oil companies, and a tax on billionaires.

The article follows the recent EUR10 billion (US$11 billon) budget cuts that France faced in February 2024 as well as signals from the Ministry of Economy and Finance that further cuts will be needed.

Press release - Le Monde (in French)

France commits US$108 million to Innovation for Development Fund

March 8, 2024 | France, International development | Share this update

On February 8, 2024, the French Treasury renewed its commitment to the FID, which is located within the AFD and led by Noel Laureate Esther Duflo.

France announced it will provide US$108 million (EUR100 million) to this fund for 2024-2027. 80% of this financing is slated to come from the Ministry of Finance and Economy.

The FID’s mission is to promote the emergence of innovations aimed at more effectively combating poverty and inequalities in developing countries. Its primary objective is to support experimental approaches and evaluate their impact using rigorous scientific methods, with an aim of scaling up innovative solutions. Most of its interventions are aimed at the priority sectors of France’s development policy, notably gender, climate, education, and health.

Press release - French Treasury (in French)

France announces 2025 feminist diplomacy conference

March 8, 2024 | France, Gender Equality | Share this update

On March 8, 2024, the MEAE organized an event entitled "Defending and promoting feminist diplomacy," in which it announced France would welcome the next edition of the shaping foreign feminist policy conference.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Stéphane Séjourné reiterated France's responsibility towards feminist diplomacy and the defense of women's rights around the world. He pledged that the right to abortion would be incorporated into the EU's Charter of Fundamental Rights. He also praised the vital work of civil society, calling it the true architect of feminist diplomacy. Finally, he announced that France will organize the 4th international conference on feminist foreign policy in 2025.

The new actions for 2024-25 were presented during the conference and include the launch of:

  • France’s international strategy for a feminist diplomacy later in 2024;
  • A campaign on women's right to vote;
  • An international campaign to defend sexual and reproductive rights, building on the Generation Eqaulity Forum and France's designation as a "champion" of SheDecides;
  • The "Women's Rights Lab" in the run-up to the in the run-up to the Artificial Intelligence Safety Summit; and
  • The Francophone feminist alliance, in the run-up to Francophonie Summit in October 2024.
Press release - MEAE (in French)Press release - MEAE (in French)

France enshrines abortion as constitutional right

March 4, 2024 | France, Gender Equality, Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health, Family Planning | Share this update

On March 4, 2024, a Constitutional Congress took place in France in Versailles to pass a vote on the historic inclusion of women’s right to abortion in the constitution, making it the first country in the world to do so.

The vote had been previously passed in both houses by a total of 760 parliamentarians, out of a total of 925. 493 votes came from the National Assembly and 267 came from the Senate.

The new constitutional provision confirms “the guaranteed freedom of women to undergo a voluntary interruption of pregnancy.”

French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal attended the gathering in the presence of Jean Veil, son of former Minister of Health Simone Veil’s, who fought to decriminalize abortion during his tenure in 1975. Attal expressed that while equality has not been fully achieved, the vote marked a historic step towards a more equal world. He also paid homage to Veil and other advocates for women's rights.

On International Women's Day, which falls on March 8, the historic move will be celebrated by French President Emmanuel Macron during a ceremony with the Ministry of Justice in order to welcome the constitutional amendment.

The Vatican expressed the Catholic Church's opposition to the constitutional amendment.

Press release - Le Monde (in French)

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