Europe, Diplomacy, and Development: New Issues in EU Relations with Developing Countries

By Carol Cosgrove-Sacks; Carla Santos | Go to book overview

8
The European Community’s Approach to Sustainable Development in its Relations with the Developing World
Gerald Simpson

Introduction

The following chapter seeks to provide an overview of the structural and substantive developments in the European Community’s approach to sustainable development issues in the developing world. The first section will give a brief review of the concept of sustainable development and the second will provide an overview of the principal developments and initiatives in the wider international forum. The third will offer a context for the Community’s policies in this area and concentrates in particular on the Community’s involvement in and reaction to the Rio World Summit, on the changes introduced by the Treaty on European Union (and its implications for development policy) and on the Fifth European Environmental Action Programme. The fourth section will then turn to the main instrument of Community development policy, the fourth Lomé Convention, focusing on its implementation in relation to environmental issues. The concluding section will identify the main issues that are likely to be of central importance in defining the Community’s approach to sustainable development in the new millennium.


Conceptual issues

The term ‘sustainable development’ has been the subject of a myriad of interpretations that have not as yet been crystallised into a single precise international definition. 1 Whatever the term’s content, the forces and dynamics underpinning its use have led to a significant

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