EU financial support for the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) has had a poor effect and needs refocusing, according to a new report from the European Court of Auditors. For many years, the APSA has been heavily dependent on donor funding and EU support has been focusing on contributing to its basic operational costs rather than on capacity-building measures, say the auditors.
The APSA was established by the member states of the African Union as a long-term response to the peace and security challenges on the African continent. Through the APSA, the African Union and regional level organisations have access to tools which help them prevent, manage and resolve conflicts.
The auditors assessed EU support for the APSA. They examined contracts concluded by the European Commission over the period from 2014 to 2016, whose total value exceeded €100 million.
They concluded that EU support for the APSA has had a poor effect and needed refocusing. Although a broad strategic framework is in place, they found that EU support had mainly been focusing on contributing to APSA’s basic operational costs. Due to shortfalls in contributions by the African Union member states, say the auditors, the APSA has been heavily dependent on donor support for many years.
“Stakeholders and donors have high expectations of the APSA,” said Juhan Parts, the Member of the European Court of Auditors responsible for the report. “But we have found that the capacity of the APSA’s components varies considerably and is challenged by a lack of political commitment from a number of AU member states, and by a lack of focus in EU funding. Clear goals for capacity-building are needed to achieve results in terms of increasing peace and security in Africa.”