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CDP promotes economic and social development in Italy, but also plays a key role in global sustainability by establishing strong relationships with countries in the developing world
Within this complex system of rights and opportunities CDP works to make a difference each day, having assumed the role of Italy’s Financial Institution for Development Cooperation as of 1 January 2016.
The 2030 Agenda, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in September 2015, set 17 objectives for sustainable development, including: ending extreme poverty throughout the world; eliminating malnutrition; doubling agricultural productivity and the income of small-scale food producers; reducing child and maternal mortality rates; ending the epidemics of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria; and promoting a culture of peace and dialogue to stabilise social and economic development processes.
As well as these emergencies, the Agenda targets a future of contemporary values: equitable and universal education; full achievement of gender equality and female empowerment; universal access to sustainable energy; support for infrastructure and innovation; the promotion of sustainable models of production and consumption; the adoption of urgent measures to combat climate change and promote sustainable use of the oceans, seas and marine resources; combating desertification, soil degradation and biodiversity loss; the promotion of just, peaceful and inclusive societies; and support for a revitalised development partnership.
The role of CDP
CDP’s role is governed by Italian Law 125/2014, setting out three areas of activity:
- CDP provides technical and financial support to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation and the and the Italian Development Cooperation Agency (AICS).
- CDP can act as administrative manager of third-party funds, including the Revolving Fund for Development Cooperation (FRCS), by signing agreements with the governments of developing countries, overseeing the management of aid financing. As well as the Revolving Fund, CDP can manage Italian, European and international funds, or funds connected to European Union programmes, also involving the private sector. This approach, which brings together various types of funds – known as ‘blending’ – is the most effective form of financing in Europe. In addition, CDP manages the activities relating to membership of the Paris Club, an informal group of creditor nations of developing countries looking at the issue of debt restructuring.
- CDP can also intervene on its own initiative, using its own resources. This area of activity may also include public/private blending, using CDP resources associated with the Rotating Fund or other Italian public funds.
The story of Italian development cooperation
Italian development cooperation began in the 1950s, over time assuming a central role in the national political system. Development cooperation is now a key policy area, with the objective of contributing to international development efforts in order to alleviate poverty around the world and to help developing countries to strengthen their institutions. Recently, new humanitarian emergencies have given CDP an enhanced role in Italian foreign policy, alongside actions to maintain peace and manage flows of migrants.
This evolving scenario meant it was necessary to update the relevant legislation, which dates back to 1987. Accordingly, Italian Law 125 (General regulation on international development cooperation) was ratified on 11 August 2014, stating that cooperation is an “integral and essential part of foreign policy”.
The new legislation aims, on one hand, to update the system some 27 years after Law 49/1987 came into force, reorganising the entities, instruments, means of intervention and guidelines that have since come into play in the international community; on the other hand it aims to adapt the Italian development cooperation system to the prevailing models in use in European Union partner countries. In addition, the new law sets out a new governance architecture for the cooperation system, whose consistency and policy coordination is guaranteed by the Interministerial Committee for Development Cooperation. Finally, the new law also defines CDP’s new function.