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European Union External and Internal Humanitarian Aid

Petr Pospíšil

The European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations department (ECHO), guided by the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid policy framework, has achieved the European Union’s objectives of delivering food aid to developing nations during humanitarian crises. From an economic viewpoint, the regulatory policy considers the availability of resources to determine the level of aid that should be offered at any particular point in time. My analysis of the policy framework demonstrates that it is highly stringent and lacks efficiency in aid distribution decision-making. However, ECHO can adopt policies that allow it to make quicker judgments based on prior occurrences in some nations experiencing a humanitarian crisis. It is also essential for ECHO to invest in ongoing data collection and assessment procedures to help in preemptively identifying high-risk areas and distributing aid more quickly moving forward. In addition to ECHO, the EU has set up other mechanisms to disburse humanitarian aid within the EU, including the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD). However, according to the recent audit reports, its effectiveness in alleviating poverty is yet to be demonstrated. A holistic approach is needed, which instead of focusing solely on food should also address social inclusion.
Keywords: policy framework, food aid, developing countries, food security, European Union, ECHO, FEAD, humanitarian aid, policy change

Department of Enterprise and European Law, Faculty of International Relations, Prague School of Economics VSE.


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