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COMMISSION DECISION of on the financing of humanitarian actions in the south-east African and south-west Indian Ocean region from the general budget of the European Union (ECHO/-FA/BUD/2010/03000)

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THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,

Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, Having regard to Council Regulation (EC) No.1257/96 of 20 June 1996 concerning humanitarian aid1, and in particular Articles 2 and 4, and Article 15(3) thereof;

Whereas:

(1) The south-east African and south-west Indian Ocean region is exposed to a wide range of natural disasters, such as floods, cyclones, and volcanic eruptions,

(2) Local communities are very vulnerable to these disasters, the effects of which are compounded by socioeconomic factors, such as high population density, extreme poverty, and in some cases, a high prevalence of HIV/AIDS;

(3) Lessons learned from the first DIPECHO2 Action Plan in the region lead to the conclusion that natural hazards, mainly floods and cyclones, in this region put at risk not only the lives of individuals, but also their livelihoods, especially for those based in agriculture;

(4) It is necessary to respond to the livelihoods concerns of these communities at risk of natural disasters, by linking Disaster Risk Reduction-based food security actions to those of ongoing community-based DIPECHO projects in order to decrease their vulnerability;

(5) To reach populations in need, humanitarian aid should be channelled through nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) and international organisations including United Nations (UN) agencies. Therefore the European Commission should implement the budget by direct centralized management or by joint management;

(6) An assessment of the humanitarian situation leads to the conclusion that humanitarian aid actions should be financed by the European Union for a period of 18 months;

(7) For the purposes of this Decision the south-east African and south-west Indian Ocean region countries involved are the Comoros, Madagascar, Malawi and Mozambique;

(8) It is estimated that an amount of EUR 5,000,000 from budget article 23 02 02 of the general budget of the European Union is necessary to provide humanitarian assistance to the vulnerable population of the south-east African and south-west Indian Ocean region at risk of natural disasters, taking into account the available budget, other donors' contributions and other factors. Although as a general rule actions funded by this Decision should be co-financed, the Authorising Officer, in accordance with Article 253 of the Implementing Rules of the Financial Regulation, may agree to the full financing of actions;

(9) The present Decision constitutes a financing Decision within the meaning of Article 75 of the Financial Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/20023, Article 90 of the detailed rules for the implementation of the Financial Regulation determined by Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2342/20024, and Article 15 of the internal rules on the implementation of the general budget of the European Union5;

(10) In accordance with Article 17(2) of Council Regulation (EC) No.1257/96 of 20 June 1996, the Humanitarian Aid Committee gave a favourable opinion on 8 June 2010.

HAS DECIDED AS FOLLOWS:

Article 1

1. In accordance with the objectives and general principles of humanitarian aid, the Commission hereby approves a total amount of EUR 5,000,000 for the financing of humanitarian actions in the south-east African and south-West Indian Ocean region from budget article 23 02 02 of the 2010 general budget of the European Union.

2. In accordance with Articles 2 and 4 of Council Regulation No.1257/96, the principal objective of this Decision is to provide short-term food assistance to vulnerable populations living in areas most affected by natural hazards in the south-east African and south-west Indian Ocean region. The humanitarian actions shall be implemented in the pursuance of the following specific objective:

- To protect livelihoods of vulnerable populations regularly affected by natural disasters and to establish conditions to promote disaster preparedness by providing short-term food security, short-term livelihood support, and other support activities.

The full amount of this Decision is allocated to this specific objective.