EU Announces ECOWAS Support Package

EU Announces ECOWAS Support Package
24 October 2023

On October 19th, the European Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen and ECOWAS Commission President Omar Alieu Touray announced the launching of a major package to help stabilize and drive the socio-economic development of West Africa.

This aid comes at an especially difficult time for West Africa, which has been badly affected by the recent coup in Niger, while also having to deal with worsening violence, climate change, and rising grain and oil costs. In total, seven financial agreements were signed by the EU and ECOWAS for a total of €212.5 million, focusing on peace and security, transport, water management, environment, digitalization, health, and education. These agreements are part of the EU's broader commitment to invest up to €150 billion in Africa from 2021 to 2027, supporting regional economic integration and sustainable growth. Additional support in various sectors is planned to complement this financial package in the near future. However, a breakdown of the currently announced spending can be found below.

A breakdown of EU Support for ECOWAS


  1. Support to Free Movement of persons and Migration (€34 million): Maximizing the development potential of free movement of persons and migration within a more secure and rights-based Economic Community of West African Countries in the context of regional integration process. This would be achieved by supporting the effective implementation of ECOWAS Free Movement Protocol and ECOWAS Common Approach on Migration at the regional, national and local levels.
  2. Africa Trade Competitiveness and Market Access (€50 million): Increasing sustainable intra-African trade and strengthening Africa-EU trade by enhancing market access and export competitiveness for SMEs in selected value chains.
  3. Trade in Services in Sub-Saharan Africa (€11.5 million): Increasing the liberalisation of services and exports for selected services sectors with the aim to increase intra-regional, continental and bilateral trade in services, enabling higher integration into regional and global value chains.
  4. Support programme for specialised ECOWAS organisations active in the energy sector to develop the regional electricity market and operationalise its interconnected grid and increase the share of renewable energy in the energy mix (€25 million): Increasing the share of renewable energy in the energy mix through the establishment and development of the regional electricity market for sustainable, affordable and accessible energy for women and men in all their diversity.
  5. Regional Clean Cooking Action in West Africa – ReCCAWA (€12 million): Increasing access to clean, efficient, sustainable and affordable cooking energy solutions in West Africa by strengthening the clean cooking enabling framework at regional and national scales, by proposing innovative financing and promoting business models that will scale-up the supply, dissemination and adoption of clean cooking solutions, and by creating and disseminating evidence-based data and knowledge that will contribute to the governance of the West African cooking sector.
  6. Project to support the Regional Food Security Storage Strategy in West Africa – PASRSSA (€20 million): Supporting the integrated and coordinated implementation of ECOWAS’s regional storage strategy and the regional governance of food and nutrition security of actors in the Sahel Club and West Africa.
  7. Regional support programme for the development of the pastoral economy in West Africa and the Sahel – PRADEP-AOS (€60 million): Enhancing the contribution of the livestock sector to the transformation of sustainable food systems and to inclusive and resilient green growth of the economies of the countries of the region.



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