Focus on Members
Austria’s regional strategy for West Africa: Key priorities and challenges
Interview with Mr Stefan Scholz, Head of Department, Programming & Planning of Development Co-operation, Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs (BMEIA), 11 June 2015
“Our key priorities in West Africa are renewable energy, resilience and food security as well as conflict prevention and peacekeeping. […] We are currently developing a regional strategy for West Africa, which is motivated by a desire to ensure programmatic coherence of all Austrian ODA actors in a “whole-of-government approach”. One of the most essential transformational shifts for Austrian development co-operation is definitely the commitment to “leave no one behind” and consequently the challenge of inclusion, which has always received a great deal of attention from the Austrian public”.
Strategy and policy Group (SPG)
The Strategy and Policy Group (SPG) brings together Members twice a year to define the SWAC’s work priorities and approve the programme of work and budget, as well as activity and financial reports. Members also ensure the smooth functioning of SWAC through their financial contributions and designate the SWAC President. The position is currently held by François-Xavier de Donnea, Belgian Minister of State. T. Jean de Dieu Somda, former ECOWAS Commission Vice President, is the Special Representative of the President responsible for promoting SWAC on the international scene. The SWAC Secretariat is in charge of implementing the work programme. It is placed under the management structure of the OECD Global Relations Directorate. > SPG meeting, 11 June 2015
Eligible for membership are:
- West African regional organisations
- West African countries (ECOWAS members, Chad and Mauritania)
- Development partner countries
- International organisations
Members contribute with an agreed minimum financial contribution to the implementation of the Club's programme of work and participe in the SPG meetings.
> Mandate | Memorandum of Understanding with the OECD.
PROGRAMME OF WORK
2012 Annual Report
2011 Annual Report
The European Union is an important partner and contributes to the financing of the SWAC programme of work, in particular activities linked to food security and resilience.
As Observers, the African Union and the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency, the Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development, and the Network of Farmers’ Organisations and Agricultural Producers of West Africa (ROPPA) are closely associated with SWAC activities.