KAYANZA August 23rd (ABP) – The Ambassador of the European Union to Burundi, Mr. Claude Bochu, officially launched on Monday August 21, 2023, at the headquarters of Kayanza province (north), the activities of the first edition of the caravan organized by the European Union (EU) Embassy. The activity was attended by the Governor of Kayanza, Colonel Rémy Cishahayo, and the better known Burundian artists such as the singers Sat-B and Meilli as well as the comedian by the name of Mutima. This tour, which will end on August 26 in Bujumbura province, concerns seven provinces of the country, a check on the site by ABP has revealed.
In a press conference hosted after the launch of the activity, Ambassador Bochu indicated that this caravan will make it possible to be in contact with the beneficiaries of EU-funded projects. He stressed that this caravan will be marked by both cultural and sporting events. We will also have the opportunity to deal with the themes in relation to the European Union interventions in Burundi, namely nutrition, access to drinking water, electricity, health, education, to name but a few.
Asked why the choice of seven provinces instead of the 18 of the country, the EU ambassador to Burundi replied that it is because it is for the first time that such an event is organized and that they targeted the provinces covered by many EU-funded projects. He said he was confident that the caravan could take place in other provinces for future editions.
Shortly before, administrative officials, producers, consumers and coffee exporters had participated in a workshop to present the new regulations on deforestation and forest degradation. According to the consultant, that regulation, which dates from June 2022 and will be implemented in December 2024, was drawn up after noting that around 420,000,000 hectares have been deforested since 1990 all over the planet.
The regulation aims to prohibit the marketing of goods and products derived from several raw materials if they are susceptible to deforestation. That new regulation of the member countries of the European Union concerns coffee for Burundi, cocoa, soya, oil palm and cattle for other countries. It requires that coffee from plantations obtained in 2020 after deforestation is not accepted in member countries of the European Union.
The consultant agronomist, Mr. Emile Kamwenubusa, said that this measure was due to the fact that the EU wants to take its responsibilities and honor various commitments in the fight against global warming and the environmental protection. For that reason, operators placing the products in question on the market have several responsibilities, namely collecting information relating to those products (description, quantities, geolocation of plots exploited, contact details of suppliers, etc.), analyzing, evaluating and mitigating the risk to have products that do not comply with the new regulation.
During the discussions, the participants in the workshop, including the administrative officials, suggested that it would be better to wait for the application of that new regulation of the European Union. Thus, they added, in-depth discussions will be needed to avoid that the economy of certain country go bankrupt.