Answer – Tackling the root causes of migratory flight – E-014002/2015

Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) states have been negotiated with a view to promote sustainable development. This involves, inter alia, creating the right conditions for private sector development which supports job creation, since lack of economic opportunities is one of the causes of migratory flight.

The sustainable development of ACP countries was at the core of the Sustainability Impact Assessment (SIA) of the EU-ACP EPAs of 2003-2007(1). As stated by the SIA, a comprehensive set of trade measures, such as duty-free quota-free market access into the EU for EPA signatories, can help realise the development opportunities provided by these Agreements. As such, this impact assessment addressed several pertinent issues related to the root causes of migratory flight.

Further, development cooperation is essential when addressing the root causes of irregular migration and forced displacement. It is now also firmly embedded in the new Sustainable Development Goals. With the overall aim of maximising the development impact of migration, the Commission is committed to step up efforts in this area. In addition to the dedicated thematic migration programme under the Development Cooperation Instrument(2) (DCI) and funding under geographical programmes under the DCI and the European Development Fund(3) (EDF), the newly established EU Emergency Trust Fund for stability and addressing root causes of irregular migration and displaced persons in Africa will be an essential contribution to a flexible, speedy and efficient EU response(4).

(2) Regulation (EU) No 233/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11.3.2014 establishing a financing instrument for development cooperation for the period 2014-2020 (OJ L 77, 15.3.2014, p. 44-76).
(3) Internal Agreement between the representatives of the Governments of the Member States of the EU, meeting within the Council, on the financing of the EU aid under the multiannual financial framework for the period 2014 to 2020, in accordance with the ACP-EU Partnership Agreement, and on the allocation of financial assistance for the overseas countries and territories to which Part Four of the TFEU applies (OJ L 210, 6.8.2013).
(4) C(2015)7293 final.