Analysis of Development Co-operation
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Article 209 PDF Print E-mail

1. The European Parliament and the Council, acting in accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure, shall adopt the measures necessary for the implementation of development cooperation policy, which may relate to multiannual cooperation programmes with developing countries or programmes with a thematic approach.

2. The Union may conclude with third countries and competent international organisations any agreement helping to achieve the objectives referred to in Article 21 of the Treaty on European Union and in Article 208 of this Treaty.

The first subparagraph shall be without prejudice to Member States' competence to negotiate in international bodies and to conclude agreements.

3. The European Investment Bank shall contribute, under the terms laid down in its Statute, to the implementation of the measures referred to in paragraph 1.


  • Paragraph 1 confirms that EU development policy will be co-decided by the Council and the European Parliament.
  • On development policy, both the EU as a group and individual Member States can still negotiate agreements with third countries or international organisations
  • The sentence on the special status of the ACP-EC Convention, which was included in Article 179 TEC, has not been reproduced in this article.


  • Development policy is confirmed as a Community policy (subject to the normal legislative procedure). As the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) has a different status (intergovernmental policy), the interactions between the CFSP and development cooperation should preserve the different nature of these two policies. Institutional structures bringing these policies together such as the High Representative for Union Foreign Affairs and Security Policy should therefore respect the clear lines of accountability required for a Community policy if the integrity of development cooperation is to be respected.
  • Article 179 TEC included a special reference to ACP countries: 'The provisions of this Article shall not affect cooperation with the, African, Caribbean and Pacific countries in the framework of the ACP-EC Convention'. This sentence aimed at preserving a special status for cooperation with ACP countries and specifically keeping the European Development Fund, which incorporates money dedicated to ACP countries, out of the general EU aid framework and, therefore, out of the EC budget. The deletion of this sentence in Article 209 of the Lisbon Treaty does not mean that the EDF will be integrated within the overall budget, as other changes in EU primary law would be needed to allow budgetisation.
  • Indeed, Maastricht Declaration 12 states that the European Development Fund will be managed on an intergovernmental basis and this declaration will stay valid after the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty.


  • Draws on Articles 179 and 181┬áTEC