PRESS RELEASE BY THE MINISTRY FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND TRADE PROMOTION Talks with the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change on ways to increase Malta’s development footprint in Africa

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion Carmelo Abela had an exchange of views with Tony Blair, former prime minister of the United Kingdom and executive chairman of the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change. They discussed how Malta could increase its development footprint in Africa through new niches of cooperation, which can result in a multiplier effect.

The meeting took place in the margins of the European Development Days (EDD), held in Brussels on the 18th and 19th June 2019. The EDD is Europe’s leading forum on development, and has been held every year since 2006. Organised by the European Commission, this major event brings the development community together each year to share ideas and experiences in ways that inspire new partnerships and innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges.

This year’s theme was ‘Addressing inequalities: building a world which leaves no one behind’. It was chosen especially in view of the United Nations’ High Level Political Forum, to be held in July, during which the UN will take stock of the deliverance of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) � the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all by 2030.

Malta’s presence at the EDD highlighted the country’s longstanding commitment to development and the implementation of the SDGs. Taking the floor at a discussion under the theme ‘In search of equality: migration, forced displacement, and the SDGs’, Minister Carmelo Abela stressed the need for a comprehensive regional and global approach to migration, a balanced narrative on the phenomenon, and the direct involvement of youths to achieve lasting solutions.

At the EDD, Minister Abela also visited stands at the EDD village, including one set up by a consortium of which both KOPIN, a Maltese non-governmental organisation, and the Marsa Local Council form part. The project, entitled ‘Snapshopts from the Borders’ was launched in 2017 in 14 countries, including Malta, and will continue to be featured beyond the EDD events. The project aims at promoting more effective policy coherence through a strengthened network of European border towns directly facing migration flows. The heart of the project is bringing the voice of the real protagonists of migration from the periphery to the centre, where it matters and where it can really make a change.

Source: Government of Malta