The European Union has announced that it will pledge 257 million euro (US$320.6 million) to Myanmar to fund rural development, political reform, peace initiatives and other issues for the next three years.
The European Union and its Member States, together with the Myanmar government, presented the Joint EU Development Partners’ Transitional Strategy for Myanmar 2014-2016, in a press release November 25.
The EU claims that the ground-breaking strategy will maximise cooperation and efficiency between the European Union and its Member States in their support of Myanmar by utilising a single, joint framework in the implementation of development initiatives.
The programme begins this year and ends in 2016, the EU said.
Rural development is on the top of the list to benefit from the assistance, with 70 million euro (K90.6 billion) of the total earmarked, followed by 31 million euro for political reform, including the general elections next year, and 30 million euro for peace and reconciliation initiatives.
“This innovative framework illustrates the EU in Myanmar putting the priorities of the European Development policy into action,” EU ambassador to Myanmar Mr Roland Kobia said in the press release.
This process began in November 2013, when a high-level EU-Myanmar task force comprised of Union Ministers and European Commissioners, senior officials and business leaders made it clear that pooling strengths and resources between the EU Member States assisting Myanmar – namely Germany, Denmark, France, Sweden, UK, Italy, Finland, Hungary, Czech Republic, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, – would boost efficiency and ensure that the European Development Partners are best able to support the transition process move forward.
The single framework that will guide the European Development Partners in their assistance to Myanmar represents the EU’s and its Member States’ commitment to aid effectiveness, working together to make a strong contribution to Myanmar’s ongoing development, according to their statement.