Commission to boost humanitarian effort to €30 million in Haiti

After the catastrophic earthquacke that has devasted Haiti, the European Commission and its department of Humanitarian Aid have launched a new aid decision to provide assistance to victims.

The Commission is launching a further humanitarian aid decision for €19 million to provide more urgent assistance to victims of the earthquake in Haiti. This comes on top of the €3 million in fast-track funding announced on Wednesday 13 January and the €8 million re-allocated from its existing humanitarian budget for Haiti. All of these funds are channelled through implementing partners (UN agencies, the Red Cross and non-governmental organisations). EU Member States have so far announced €92 million in humanitarian funding.

In addition, the Commission has provided more than €1.5 million through the EU civil protection mechanism to help fund the transport of emergency teams and equipment to Haiti. More than €300 million has also been earmarked (non-humanitarian funding) for immediate reconstruction purposes and the medium-term recovery phase.

EU Development Ministers have had a meeting chaired by Vice-President/High Representative Catherine Ashton in Brussels to discuss immediate emergency relief measures and the EU's contribution to post-disaster rehabilitation and reconstruction. European Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid Karel De Gucht will travel to Port-au-Prince early next week to see first-hand the situation of the people of Haiti.

His visit will be an opportunity to assess the immediate life-saving humanitarian aid needs as well as the medium and long-term requirements for reconstruction and rehabilitation of the country. He will also meet with the Haitian authorities and the UN and main aid representatives on the spot to discuss the coordination of the overall relief co-ordination effort, which the EU aims to consolidate and strengthen.

The EU is committed to ensuring that the international community establishes a long-term commitment to support the rebuilding and sustainable development of Haiti.