The European Year for Development
The European Council and the European Parliament have designated 2015 as the European Year for Development, with the goal of raising awareness, informing and engaging European citizens on themes of cooperation and world development. This is the first ever European Year to deal with the European Union's external action and specifically EU development cooperation. European citizens do not know much about development cooperation, despite the fact that the EU – through the European Commission and EU Member States - is the world's largest development aid donor, providing over half the public assistance to development at a global level. Institutions in Brussels and Member States are equally called upon to make every effort to inform citizens on this subject, in a key year for large-scale international development actions.
2015 is the deadline year for the achievement of Millennium Development Goals, and it is the year in which a new plan for global development capable of tackling the challenges of poverty eradication and sustainable development will be defined, taking into consideration the environmental, social and economic dimension. 2015 is also the year in which a new global agreement is due to be defined, in Paris, and the year of Milan Expo, which, as mentioned in the European Year decision, "will provide a unique opportunity to discuss worldwide development policies and carry out activities to raise the awareness of the public on sustainable development and connected issues". For Italy, 2015 will also mark the launch of the new development cooperation architecture provided for by Law 125/2014.