The Pacific should consider itself lucky. It is not amongst the 19 countries that will suffer aid cuts under the European Union’s new international aid initiatives. A spokesperson from the European Union’s office in Suva said the Pacific is not amongst the 19 middle-income countries which will cease to get development funding from the EU in 2014. The 19 countries falling into this classification are Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Maldives, Thailand, Kazakhstan and Iran. Whilst the spokesperson could not divulge the actual amount for the Pacific, he said the amount would be higher than the 10th European Development Fund of Euro 22.6 billion for the years 2007 to 2013. “Your information regarding the 19 middle income countries ceasing to receive development funding is correct. Nevertheless, this does not concern the Pacific region,” he said. “High income, upper middle income and other large middle income countries, which are on a sustainable development path and/or have access to large domestic and external resources to finance their own development strategies, would, in principle, graduate out of bilateral aid programmes in the framework of the DCI (Development Cooperation Instrument).
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