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Official speeches and statements - April 12, 2017

Published on April 12, 2017

1. Fight against terrorism - National Defense and Security Council - Communiqué issued by the Presidency of the Republic (Paris - April 12, 2017)

The National Defence and Security Council, convened this morning by the President, looked at the vigilance measures implemented to protect our territory and our nationals against identified threats, particularly in light of the recent attacks committed in St Petersburg, Stockholm and Egypt, and in view of the special requirements of the election period which is getting under way.

The Defence Council is closely following how the investigation into the attack on the Dortmund bus is proceeding.

The President recalled France’s solidarity with the countries hit by acts of terrorism in recent days.

The Council also discussed the main international crises and the terms of engagement of French forces operating outside France.

The President has asked for the utmost to continue to be done to end the repeated attacks on civilians who are victims of the conflict in Syria, particularly by enabling the truth to be established about the conditions of the chemical agent attack perpetrated in Khan Sheikhoun on 4 April by the forces of Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

He recalled the urgent need for the international community, especially the United Nations Security Council, to shoulder its responsibilities in these circumstances and take resolute action to punish the crimes committed and protect civilians.

2. Development - Publication of French official development assistance figures for 2016 - Joint communiqué issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development and the Ministry of the Economy and Finance (Paris - April 11, 2017)

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has just published preliminary data on official development assistance (ODA) for 2016.

French ODA has risen and stands at euro8.6 billion or 0.38% of gross national income (GNI), compared to euro8.15 billion or 0.37% of GNI in 2015. This increase relates primarily to bilateral aid (up 6% in current euros), due to loans by the French Development Agency (AFD) and the Trésor (1).

France remains one of the world’s leading donors, ranking fifth in volume of assistance after the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and Japan.

France’s efforts to support the poorest countries are stable, with a fifth of its bilateral aid devoted to Least Developed Countries (LDCs).

France is still resolutely implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in its development and international solidarity policy. The decisions by the Interministerial International Cooperation and Development Committee (CICID) on 30 November 2016 strengthened the priority given to Africa, LDCs and the fight against climate change.

In 2017, financial resources for development assistance should again increase markedly. The sharp rise voted for in the initial finance act (nearly euro400 million in extra budget appropriations and taxes allocated) should increase aid to more than 0.4% of GNI. This upward trend will be brought about partly through the vulnerability mitigation and crisis response facility created by the AFD.

France is thus continuing to honour the commitments it made in 2015 to improve its public finances to support sustainable development, by increasing the AFD group’s annual finances by euro4 billion by 2020, half of it to support the fight against climate change, and the annual sum of bilateral donations by nearly euro400 million.

This financial trajectory in the run-up to 2020 will put France on the road to the target of 0.7% of GNI in the framework of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

(1) Public revenue department.