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Discussion paper : The impact of EU seed laws on food security in Africa

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Aprodev 23 janvier 2015

Thèmes :

The APRODEV PCD Discussion Paper series will assess the impact of EU non-development
policies on its stated food and nutrition security objectives. The purpose of these
assessments will be to highlight areas where the EU is violating its legal obligation to policy
coherence for development. This information could be of use to the various political
struggles of social movements for the right to food and farmers’ rights, as well as the
political efforts of civil society organisations and parliamentarians who are trying to hold
EU member states and officials to account for policies that harm development.

In 2013, the EU developed a comprehensive plan to implement the commitments set out
in its food security, resilience, and nutrition policy frameworks. The Food and Nutrition
Security Implementation Plan commits amongst others, to improve smallholder resilience
and rural livelihoods in developing countries. In its 2010 Policy Framework on Food
Security the EU acknowledges that ‘investments in the smallholder sector yield the best
returns in terms of poverty reduction and growth’ and it therefore commits to ‘enhancing
the incomes of smallholder farmers and the resilience of vulnerable communities’.

While the Implementation Plan acknowledges that non-development EU policies and
processes can impact on food and nutrition security outcomes, it does not commit to
measure any policies for coherence, with the exception of ‘political dialogue’. Instead, this
task is left to the 2010-2013 PCD Work Programme, which is beset with serious
shortcomings. These undermine its ability to create the political momentum and action
necessary to enforce the EU’s legal commitment to policy coherence for development.

To help address this lack of political will to measure and act on the EU’s legal obligation to
policy coherence, APRODEV has developed a series of indicators, based on EU commitments
made in its resilience, food security and nutrition policy frameworks, as well as in relation to
the Convention on Biological Diversity and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. These indicators will be used in each PCD discussion paper to assess the impact of EU non-development policies on food security.

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