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50 AU PARTNERSHIPS


Forging fi rmer links with Europe


Years of dialog and trust, coupled with formal policies, have built a level of cooperation that is yielding concrete results, writes Jesse Morgan


Union Summit, the African Union (AU) Chairperson and European Commission President had much to talk about. Cooperation between the two


W Europe


Total area: 4 million sq km Population: 495 million Source: http://europa.eu/about-eu/facts-fi gures/living/index_en.htm


INVEST IN AFRICA 2011


blocs has never been closer. It is built on years of dialog and trust, and further strengthened by the successful implementation of policy initiatives. At the heart of this cooperation is the aim of creating an investment-friendly environment that creates jobs, harnessing the continent’s vast endowments of people and materials and securing mutual security and prosperity. The formalization of the dialog


between the two blocs – which preceded


hen Dr Jean Ping and José Manuel Barroso met on November 29, 2010 at the third Africa-European


even the creation of the AU as the successor organization to the Organization of African Unity (OAU) in 2002 – began with the fi rst Africa-EU Summit in Cairo in 2000 and has evolved over a period that has since seen the EU expand in its membership from 15 to 27 members – an area accounting for around 28 percent of global GDP. The relationship is crucial to both parties. The EU is by far the continent’s biggest trading partner – in 2009 it was the destination for 37 percent of African exports and the source of 36 percent of African imports. A milestone in relations between


the two groups was reached at the Lisbon Summit in 2007, with the signing of the Joint Africa-EU Strategy (JAES), which built on the aims of the Summit to further “investment, economic growth and job creation”. The JAES has four pillars that defi ne the key principles around which cooperation between the two blocs is based: the forging of closer political ties between the two groups; the promotion of peace, security, freedom, economic development, regional and continental integration and the fulfi llment of the


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