Improving Lives: Results from the Partnership of the United Nations and the European Commission in 2007

29 Aug 2008

Report Summary

The third annual partnership report was issued in 2008 and entitled “Improving Lives: Results from the Partnership of the United Nations and the European Commission in 2007”. The report is a comprehensive yet readable account of the global relationship between the United Nations and the European Union and what it achieved in 2007. It describes tangible development results that helped improve the lives of hundreds of millions people in over one hundred countries. The report gives special emphasis to the EU-UN cooperation in upholding human rights.

What follows are some of the results supported by the UN-European Commission (EC) partnership in 2007:

1. Promoted human rights across the world: In 30 countries the partnership advocated for the rights of refugees and internally displaced people and for legal and political change to bring countries in line with international standards.

2. Deepened democracy: The partnership helped 11 countries in Africa, Asia and Central America to hold free and fair elections, and the registration of some 80 million voters was supported.

3. Reinforced the rule of law and access to justice: The partnership enhanced judicial independence and supported the enactment of pro-poor laws in various countries, including Afghanistan, Liberia and Somalia.

4. Delivered humanitarian assistance: Humanitarian needs were addressed in 30 countries worldwide, arising from both man-made and natural disasters. More than 48 million people were assisted with food, including 26 million children.

5. Helped people recover from crises: 50 million square meters of land were declared mine impact free and 2 million people regained access to productive land and social infrastructure as a result of mine clearance. Almost 2 million mines and unexploded ordnances were destroyed.

6. Provided essential services:  The fight against polio was supported in some 27 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. In Iraq, 9 million text books were delivered to some 6 million children.

7. Promoted agriculture and rural development: 150,000 metric tons of food aid was purchased from local markets in 21 countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America, impacting positively on local production.


  • More than € 750 million of EC funds were spent in 2007 through UN projects.
  • In 2007, the EC and specialized agencies, funds and programmes of the UN cooperated in development and humanitarian efforts in 102 countries across all regions of the world.
  • An external evaluation of the EC’s external cooperation through the UN from 1999 to 2006 concluded that there was a positive impact from most of EC’s funding through the UN.

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