After several years of instability on the domestic front, the political situation in Mauritania is consolidating gradually. Although real efforts concerning the governance sector are visible, some advances are expected for civil society, justice and human rights. The issue of sustainable and inclusive growth arises, with nearly a quarter of the population still food insecure, despite an improved economic situation. Through its role in the fight against crime and illegal immigration and its geographical proximity to Europe, Mauritania is a strategic country in West Africa.
The National Indicative Progamme 2014-2020 for Mauritania defines the areas of cooperation between the EU and Mauritania under the 11th European Development Fund (EDF).
Cooperation has been suspended following the coup of 6 August 2008, but due to the political agreement in Dakar on 4 June 2009, fully resumed on 25 January 2010. The decision on the resumption of cooperation with EU set a political dialogue in the framework of Article 96 of the Cotonou Agreement to promote in particular the progress in governance.
The Country Strategy Paper (2008-2013) and the National Indicative Programme (NIP) for Mauritania specify the areas of cooperation for around €210 million of financing under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF). The EU supports the country in the areas of concentration of governance and regional integration. The assistance to governance is mainly to support local development, decentralization and justice reform. Assistance to regional integration focuses on support to road infrastructure.
In addition, a budget support programme is underway to support the sectors of education, health, security and public finances.
Mauritania also benefited from a substantial increase in initial funds of the 10th EDF to allow the inclusion of new priorities in security and food areas. The Libyan and Malian crisis and the severe food crisis in the Sahel region has suffered have indeed needed a quick response from the EU.
Mauritania is one of the EU's privileged diplomatic interlocutors on the subject of security and development in the Sahel. The EU supports Mauritania's efforts to develop cross-border and regional approach to the management of various socio-economic and identified safety issues.