The European Commission has announced €467m new funding to support migrants and refugees under the EU Trust Fund for Africa.
The provision of additional funding to support migrants and refugees will also be accompanied by a package of measures, all of which aims to address the root causes of irregular migration in the Sahel/Lake Chad region and the Horn of Africa, by promoting stability, creating jobs and driving economic growth.
This effort to address the root causes of migration will also focus on providing new opportunities for young people and vulnerable groups, and will complement ongoing bilateral and multilateral efforts including through the Joint African Union-European Union-United Nations Task Force.
What are the commission’s priorities?
The new fund will support the EU’s work with UNHCR, the UN’s refugee agency, through which more than 1,200 refugees have been evacuated from Libya to Niger, and a further 108 have been resettled to Europe.
Of the total €467m, some €70m will be provided to facilitate resettlement efforts, particularly to help migrants stranded along typical migration routes. A further €20m will be provided towards developing and implementing sustainable and rights-based return policies.
In addition, some €4m will be allocated towards sustainable employment opportunities for young people, to address a primary root cause of irregular migration. Programmes to provide vocational training and skills development will be established in Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Sudan.
What impact will the funding have?
European Commission High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Federica Mogherini, said that the additional funds would further the EU’s commitment to facilitating a humane and dignified migration system.
She explained: “We continue working to save lives, provide safe and dignified returns and legal avenues, and tackle the root causes of migration, by creating jobs and growth. With the UNHCR, we have evacuated 1,287 refugees from Libya to Niger, who need to be resettled swiftly now… Today’s additional commitments will further consolidate our work towards managing human mobility – in a humane, secure and dignified way together with our partners.”