The new European External Investment Plan: the biggest investment ever proposed for Africa & the Mediterranean
The European Commission announced last week a new European External Investment Plan (EEIP) to encourage investments in Africa and the EU Neighbourhood and contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
Based on an initial EUR 3.35 billion contribution from the EU budget and the European Development Fund and using innovative financial instruments, the new EEIP is expected to trigger additional public and private investments up to EUR 44 billion, which could well reach the amount of EUR 88 billion if matched with contributions from Member States.
The EU’s ambitious proposal for a European External Investment Plan in Africa and the European Neighbourhood, goes beyond classical development assistance and promotes a new model of participation of the private sector to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Core to the EEIP will be the European Fund for Sustainable Development (EFSD), which once established, it will facilitate private investments through access to finance and risk-sharing.
Smart and sustainable investment remain the key factors in transforming development policy to better support achieving the SDGs, and address the multiple challenges faced in both the EU's Neighbourhood and Africa.
As HRVP Federica Mogherini pointed out recently at a press conference, there is a clear “shift of the Union's approach focusing on growth in Europe, investing in investments.”
The Plan will engage in areas crucial for sustainable development and for building more resilient societies. Indicative interventions will include sustainable infrastructure, agriculture, as well as direct support to private sector development. Special attention will be given to SMEs and young people, which the EU sees as a way of managing migratory flows and preventing radicalization.