Promotion of cross-border cooperation at local, sub regional and regional levels
The Niamey Convention is in line with the agreement that was established by the Agenda 2063 under the aspiration of a continent of seamless borders, and management of cross-border resources through dialogue. It complies with the actions highlighted in the road map, which consists of implementing joint cross-border investments to exploit shared natural resources and silence the guns by 2020, through enhancement dialogue-centered conﬂict prevention and resolution, to make peace a reality for all people. Signing the Convention is a way to concretely anchor the Agenda 2063 at national and local levels.
The 23rd ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union, held in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, from 26th to 27th June 2014, adopted the African Union Convention on Cross-Border Cooperation Convention known as the Niamey Convention.
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The Niamey Convention is giving the legal framework for Member States to develop and implement cross-border cooperation initiatives. It is also a way of formalizing the cooperation between countries that other stakeholders can refer to and rely on when setting up “support mechanisms”. The Niamey Convention gives visibility to the issue of cross-border cooperation at the political level. It is a way of institutionalizing cross-border cooperation through a continentally accepted framework, e.g. by the creation of Joint Border Commissions.
When it comes to peace and security, borders are a priority. The African Union Border Programme aims for structural prevention of conﬂicts. The objectives of the AUBP are to promote peace and stability through its four pillars: demarcation of borders, cross-border cooperation, capacity building and the mobilization of resources and partnerships.
The AUBP facilitates cross-border cooperation, in order to jointly address challenges related to common borders. There is a constant need to solve violent crises but the goal is to anticipate these conﬂicts as well as to prevent them. While boundaries could be a means to divide, the goal is to unite and to support one another. Cross-border cooperation is an instrument to promote development of shared border zones, with the aim to promote peace and stability.
Source: The African Union Website