State Secretary for International Cooperation to make “virtual” trip to Mexico to boost Spanish cooperation to combat COVID-19
The State Secretary for International Cooperation, Ángeles Moreno Bau, will make a “virtual” bilateral trip to Mexico from 8 to 11 June to jointly assess and share with “our Mexican partners” the response to COVID-19 of the cooperation authorities from the two countries.

The trip was scheduled before the coronavirus outbreak, but due to the impossibility of making a personal trip, Ángeles Moreno Bau opted to maintain the visit but in a digital format, both due to the importance of the development programmes in Mexico and to the challenge of the pandemic, which, in her opinion, requires “solidarity” and a “concerted global effort” more than ever.

The State secretary will maintain a very active schedule of meetings by video-conference from Madrid. On Monday, 8 June, she will hold a meeting with the Spanish Ambassador to Mexico, Juan López-Dóriga, and with the Under-Secretary for Multilateral Affairs and Human Rights of the Secretariat for Foreign Affairs of Mexico, Martha Delgado, in the context of the Binational Mexico-Spain Commission, set up in 1977 when diplomatic relations were re-established between the two countries.

On Tuesday, 9 June, Ángeles Moreno Bau will assess, together with representatives from the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO)/World Health Organization (WHO), UN Women, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the leadership of the United Nations in this crisis and the impact of the pandemic on health and gender in the region.

The same day, the Executive Director of the Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation (Spanish acronym: AMEXCID), Laura Elena Carrillo Cubillas, will inform Ángeles Moreno Bau of Mexico’s priorities on technical and scientific cooperation and budgetary aspects of the Joint Fund. Through this Joint Fund, the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (Spanish acronym: AECID) and AMEXCID have specifically co-funded 38 initiatives over the period 2014-2020. 

On Wednesday, 10 June, the Spanish Cultural Centre in Mexico will present the cultural industries in the country and the strengths of the Spanish language in them to the State secretary. Ángeles Moreno Bau will take part in a laboratory on digital citizenship and will later hold a meeting with the Executive Director of Cultural Diplomacy of the Secretariat for Foreign Affairs, Enrique Márquez Jaramillo, and with the Secretary for Culture of the Government of Mexico, Alejandra Frausto. 

The main hallmarks of Spanish cooperation in Mexico are the development alliances, and hence the interest in the meeting to be held on Thursday, 12 June with the Business and Development Board, set up following the earthquake in 2017, comprising 28 companies and foundations of Spanish origin. The main aim of this trip is to forge public-private alliances for development, focused on combating the pandemic.

Lastly, the State secretary will discuss with the Under-Secretary for Medium and Higher Education of the Secretariat of Public Education, Juan Pablo Arroyo, the digital gap at schools and possible lines of action on this front.

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus, Spanish cooperation has been working on a response strategy to COVID-19, which in Mexico provides for seven specific programmes in the fields of health, socio-economics and gender, with the mobilisation of funding in excess of 600,000 euros.

At a health level, the Pan-American Health Organization will implement three initiatives to protect migrants, returned emigrants and refugees; informative campaigns in vulnerable populations and provide support for public health laboratories. For its part, the City Government of Mexico DF will contribute through a project to provide safe drinking water and sanitation in marginal neighbourhoods.

The socio-economic response includes an initiative from FUNDES (Foundation for Economic and Social Development) for the digitalisation of MSMEs (micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises), and another from the Telefónica Foundation on digital training at work. As regards gender, UN Women will offer a virtual response and hotline for women and girls that are victims of violence in the context of COVID-19 in Mexico City.

Spain also co-sponsors a Resolution presented by Mexico to the General Assembly of the United Nations to ensure universal access to a future vaccine against COVID-19.



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