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Policy Coherence for Development

What is Policy Coherence for Development?

An important factor in development policy of the European Union is "Policy Coherence for Development" (PCD). This means that the European Union is legally obligated to take account of the objectives of development cooperation in the policies it implements, which are likely to affect developing countries (Art 21 and 208 of the Lisbon Treaty). This means that the European institutions must take developmental interests into account when making non-developmental policy, like for example trade policy. This is important, because non-aid policies can have a strong impact on the development of countries outside the EU.

Besides the legal status there are also strong political commitments towards Policy Coherence for the purpose of development.

A good example of a political commitment towards PCD is "The European consensus on Development". In December 2005 the Presidents of the Commission, Parliament, and the Council signed this statement on EU development policy, the "European Consensus". In this statement the European institutions promised to always take into account the objectives of development cooperation when implementing policy. Policy Coherence for Development was made a political promise. In order to achieve coherence also procedures, instruments, and mechanisms at all levels would be adapted.

Every two years the EU presents an overview of the progress made, regarding PCD. In the last overview the EU set up a new strategy, focusing on 5 areas to enhance PCD, namely trade and finance, migration, food security, climate change and development and security. Please also see the overview of progress reports by DG Development Cooperation of the EC.

For more information about the different PCD mechanisms, which have been installed by the EU in order to evaluate incoherent policies see the first chapter of CONCORD‘s report: "Spotlight on EU Policy Coherence for Development".

Fair Politics EU puts cases in the spotlight in which the European Union is failing the principle of PCD. Fair Politics makes politicians aware of incoherent policies and also provides them with background information and policy recommendations.

These policy recommendations are the result of thorough research. Different topics of incoherent policy are permanently displayed on the website. For more information about specific subjects see the headline ‘Topics’. In addtion, country based impact studies are conducted in developing countries. This research shows the impact that European policy has on people and communities on the ground. These in-depth studies can be found under the heading ‘Country Studies’.