Social Rights Monitor - Egypt

Social Rights Monitor - Egypt

Recommendations

Whereas social protection has been allocated 40% of the total budget of the Single Support Framework[1], and civil society in Egypt is considered “important for democratic and economic development and to help build political stability” [2] and the commitment to inclusive growth and job creation in Egypt  is acknowledged by the partnership[3], civil society perceives that the relationship between the Egyptian government and the EU is based mainly on financial interests, with security concerns focused on ensuring stability, overriding the promotion of human rights, prosperity and democracy.  In this regard:

  • EU-Egypt relations should take into consideration the vital role  of the independent labour movement in the 2011 revolution and should not focus on security and economic cooperation, marginalizing human rights and trade union freedoms[4];
  • Achieving social justice, prosperity and long-term sustainable development should remain at the core of the EU-Egypt partnership and the partnership should support and enhance civil society and independent trade unions rights;
  • Consultation with civil society should be structured, inclusive and participatory, enabling civil society voices and concerns to be both heard as well as reflected in the programme documents of the partnership;
  • Whereas social protection is one of the priorities of the partnership, the approach to social protection should not be narrowed to targeting very poor people only but aimed at universal protection through creating jobs, ensuring the protection of the unemployed, and including the rights of children and the elderly or disabled;
  • Lastly, the EU and Egypt should remain committed to adopting a human rights based approach, recalling that article 2 of the Association Agreement between the EU and Egypt states that “Relations between the Parties, as well as all the provisions of the Agreement itself, shall be based on respect of democratic principles and fundamental human rights as set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which guides their internal and international policy and constitutes an essential element of this Agreement.

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