This new agenda is based on the conviction that it is through cooperation and in a spirit of partnership that common challenges can be transformed into opportunities to be seized, in the mutual interest of the EU and the countries of the Southern Neighborhood. It includes an economic and investment plan aimed at stimulating long-term socio-economic recovery in the southern neighborhood. Under the EU’s new Neighborhood, Development and International Cooperation (IVCDCI) instrument, up to € 7 billion for the period 2021-2027 would be allocated to its implementation, which could mobilize up to € 30 billion in private and public investment in the region over the next decade.
The new agenda takes advantage of all EU instruments and proposes to join forces to fight climate change and accelerate ecological and digital transitions, which go hand in hand and offer real potential, to renew our commitment for common values, to address migration and forced displacement together, and to strengthen the unity and resolve of the EU, its Member States and Southern Neighborhood partners to promote peace and security in the Mediterranean region. It emphasizes five areas of action:
human development, good governance and the rule of law: renewing the common commitment to democracy, the rule of law, human rights and responsible governance;
resilience, prosperity and digital transition: supporting resilient, inclusive, sustainable and connected economies that create opportunities for all, especially women and young people;
peace and security: provide support to countries to meet security challenges and find solutions to ongoing conflicts;
migration and mobility: tackling together the challenges of forced displacement and irregular migration and fostering legal and secure pathways for migration and mobility;
ecological transition: climate resilience, energy and environment: harnessing the potential of a low-carbon future, protecting the region’s natural resources and generating green growth.
A specific economic investment plan for the southern neighbors aims to ensure that the quality of life of the populations of the region improves and that the economic recovery, especially following the COVID-19 pandemic, leaves no one next to. The plan includes preliminary flagship initiatives aimed at building resilience, building prosperity, and increasing trade and investment to support competitiveness and inclusive growth. Respect for human rights and the rule of law is an integral part of our partnership and is essential for building citizens’ trust in institutions.
In 1995, the Barcelona Declaration launched the Euro-Mediterranean partnership with the aim of creating an area of peace, shared prosperity and cultural and human exchanges. The last review of the European Neighborhood Policy took place in 2015.
25 years later, the Mediterranean region is facing a number of challenges in governance, socio-economic climate, environment and security, which are exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The December 2020 European Council underlined the need to develop a new agenda for the Southern Neighborhood and laid the groundwork for the Joint Communication.
The New Mediterranean Agenda will guide EU policy towards the region and multi-annual programming under the Neighborhood, Development Cooperation and International Cooperation Instrument (IVCDCI) at regional and bilateral levels . The EU will conduct a mid-term review of the Joint Communication by 2024.