EU launches new trust fund for Africa to tackle refugee crisis

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Valletta   –  European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, on Thursday launched an emergency trust fund for providing stability and addressing root causes of irregular migration and displaced persons in Africa.
The signing was held as EU and African leaders met for the second session of the Valletta summit on migration Thursday.
The fund will be made up of 1.8 billion euros (1.93 billion U.S. dollars) from the EU budget and the European Development Fund (EDF) to be complemented by contributions from EU member states and other donors.
Juncker said the fund for Africa, set up at a record speed, shown once more the EU’s commitment to swiftly reply to the large challenges people are facing in the region.
“I want to see more member states contributing and matching the 1.8 billion euros the EU has put forward,” he said.
According to the European Commission, to date, EU member states’ contributions amount to around 81.2 million euros, but the EU expects more contributions to follow.
The trust fund will benefit a wide range of countries across Africa that encompasses the major African migration routes to Europe.
The countries and regions are mainly the Sahel region and Lake Chad area, the Horn of Africa area and the North of Africa area.
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The EU trust fund is in addition to the existing 20 billion euros in development aid the EU and its member states’ give to Africa every year. (Xinhua/NAN)

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