News | May 11, 2023

Practitioners ‘Network Members meet in Madrid for the Annual Meeting of the General Assembly

Practitioners ‘Network Members meet in Madrid  for the Annual Meeting of the General Assembly

Partitioners´s Network organisations met in Madrid on 10-11 May, for the Annual Meeting of the General Assembly to reflect on the needed action to implement the new European cooperation approach to global development 

During the 2-days programme, participants had the opportunity to review achievements from the past year and discuss strategic priorities and better partnerships within the European Architecture for Development. At the end of the meeting FIIAPP and SNV handed over the Presidency of the Network to Expertise France, who will continue to consolidate the position of the Network within the European development cooperation system.

Spain's Secretary of State for International Cooperation, Pilar Cancela, underscored Spain's commitment to 'Team Europe' at the opening of the General Assembly. She said, "To reach alliances with our partners, it is essential to cooperate and develop partnerships also within Europe. The Practitioners' Network allows us to do this through the richness of diversity: a characteristically European way of doing things. It is ultimately about working more and better together," said Cancela. 

The directors of FIIAPP and SNV, Anna Terrón and Simon O'Connell, respectively, highlighted the prominent role and contribution of Members to the European Cooperation System that integrates and coordinates different actors. "It is an honour for Spain to have co-led this fantastic team of work in the last year. Europe has a unique cooperation proposal for the world, which can bring us closer to many of the goals of the 2030 Agenda without leaving anyone behind. The Members of our Team Europe have a clear purpose and a way in which we can complement each other. The integration of European development banks and finance development networks into this team has been a significant step in our co-presidency," declared Anna Terrón during the General Assembly.

Simon O'Connell CEO of SNV remarked "During this time of economic turmoil and polarisation we, as a Network, have to find ways to work more efficiently and effectively together, trust one another, challenge one another with clarity on our purpose, which is to be key drivers for an even better European Development Cooperation system”. 

During the upcoming year, Expertise France will be in charge of leading the Network, and promoting European cooperation, the 'Team Europe' approach, and the implementation of the Global Gateway strategy. One of the main objectives will be to maintain and deepen the dialogue between the Members of the network with other actors, such as JEFIC (Joint European Financiers for International Cooperation) and EDFI (the Association of bilateral European Development Finance Institutions), towards a common roadmap. The head of the French agency, Jérémie Pellet, stated that "in an increasingly unstable context, development cooperation is more important than ever. It is an honour to take over the Presidency of the Network and to work to consolidate the emerging European Cooperation System".