Along with its endeavors towards self-reliance, the African Union (AU) is engaging its international partners to properly align their support to the programs of the pan-African bloc, according to an AU statement later Thursday.
The ongoing reforms of the Union and the implementation of the decision on financing of the union have significant and positive implications for cooperation with partners, as it means moving away from donor-recipient relations towards true partnership, noted the Deputy Chairperson of the AU Commission Kwesi Quartey.
The Deputy Chairperson on Wednesday held a meeting with a number of development partners of AU to discuss and agree on a set of concrete actions that aim to properly align the support of the international partners to the programs of the Union.
“This would allow the African Union to also leverage the comparative advantage of partners to realize jointly aspired results,” he said.
In recognizing that the path towards self-reliance and improved operational effectiveness is not without its challenges, the AU partners have reaffirmed their support to the objectives and programs of the union and the ongoing reforms, said the statement.
They however observed the need for closer collaboration in the process to ensure financial, human, and technical resources are properly aligned for better delivery on the objectives of the Union.
The AU Commission and the international partners also intend to undertake a retreat for further deliberations and to strengthen their relations, according to the statement.
It has reiterated that AU has made great strides in the driving the financial reform as it seeks predictable and reliable funding from members states reducing over-dependence on partners.
The AU summit in Mauritania’s capital Nouakchott this year approved a total of about 681.5 million U.S. dollars for the 2019 budget, signaling a substantial decrease of the annual budget by 12 percent, compared to the previous year.
Foreign ministers of AU member states last month met at the AU headquarters in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa and discussed the progress on the reform of the union.
An extraordinary summit of AU heads of states, which is going to deliberate and review the progress on the AU Reforms, has been scheduled for November 2018.
Administrative and financial reform of the AU Commission is a central part of the reform process.
In the reform process, AU heads of states adopted a financing proposal for the union in 2016, and it directs all member states to implement a 0.2 percent levy on eligible imports to finance the African Union in its drive to be self-dependent.