Alexander De Croo signs new cooperation agreement with Guinea
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of International Development Alexander De Croo signed today a new five-year cooperation programme with the Republic of Guinea. Belgium and Guinea will work together in the coming five years on strengthening entrepreneurship, women's rights and education. After successfully containing the Ebola crisis, Guinea became a partner of the Belgian Development Cooperation in 2015.
Minister De Croo formalized the new collaboration with the Guinean Minister for Cooperation and African Integration, Dr Diené Keita. After the Ebola crisis, Guinea became in 2015 a new partner country of the Belgian Development Cooperation. The first cooperation agreement worth 15 million euro, started in 2016 and will end in 2019.
Alexander De Croo, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of International Development: “This new cooperation agreement with Guinea completely reflects the new approach of the Belgian Development Cooperation. By strengthening the economic fabric and giving more chances to women, we are making sure that Guinea can gradually stand on its own two feet over the medium term. This must be the objective of any of Belgium's interventions.”
Entrepreneurship and women's rights
The new structural cooperation programme runs from 2019 to 2024 and is worth 45 million euro. The new cooperation stands on two main pillars:
- supporting entrepreneurship in agriculture and in cities, with specific attention for women entrepreneurship;
- sexual and reproductive rights.
The agreement allows the governments of Belgium and Guinea to completely align the socioeconomic development vision of Guinea with the priorities of Belgium's Development Cooperation. Belgium's policy is aimed, in particular, at strengthening inclusive economic growth and human rights, with a specific attention for the rights of girls and women.
The Belgian development agency Enabel ensures the implementation and development of the programme, in cooperation with the Guinean Ministry for Development and African Integration. The focus lies on the geographic axis formed by the cities of Conakry, Kindia and Mamou.
Entrepreneurship in agriculture and in the cities
The entrepreneurship pillar targets entrepreneurs and agricultural businesses active in the pineapple, potato and mango value chains. The objective is to create 12,000 new and better-paid jobs, of which more than 40% will go to women. In the city centres of Conakry, Kindia and Mamou, the aim is to bolster the economic, technical and social performance of 150 existing companies in various inclusive growth sectors ranging from energy and ICT to agriculture and construction. By stimulating the competitiveness of women, the programme aims at increasing their net income by 50%.
Sexual and reproductive rights
“She Decides”, the promotion of sexual and reproductive rights and health, is the second pillar of the new programme. In this approach, the economic empowerment of women and youth is closely related to their social emancipation and the promotion of their sexual and reproductive rights. This is the objective of this intervention.
To support the two main pillars of the cooperation programme, entrepreneurship and women's rights, an “education, study and expertise” component is also foreseen.