New fund set to boost trade in Commonwealth countries

26 Nov 2015 - The Commonwealth and the Government of Malta, together with the Governments of Mauritius, Sri Lanka and India announced today a new trade financing fund to help boost trade and investment flows, particularly for small and developing countries.
The voluntary fund hopes to attract start-up capital of $20 million. It will provide member countries facing trade challenges with the finance they need to increase their trade capacity. It is estimated for every dollar invested, the fund will generate $20.

Commonwealth deploys Observers for the Seychelles Presidential Election

 The Commonwealth Secretary-General, Kamalesh Sharma, announced that the Commonwealth will deploy observers to Seychelles for the upcoming Presidential Election scheduled for 3-5 December 2015. This decision follows an invitation from the Electoral Commission of Seychelles.

Lord Sevele, former Prime Minister of Tonga will lead the Commonwealth Observer Group.

UAE’s first woman Speaker of Parliament a breakthrough for Arab world

 Geneva, 20 November 2015
The election of Dr. Amal Al Qubaisi as the first ever woman Speaker of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Parliament has been warmly welcomed by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) as a breakthrough not only for the Gulf State but also for the Arab world as a whole.
Dr. Al Qubaisi, a former Deputy Speaker of the Federal National Council and government minister, is a trailblazer for the region too. She is the first ever woman Speaker of an Arab national parliament.

Burundian Parliament must lead efforts for peace and unity

Geneva, 11 November 2015

The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) is urging the Burundian Parliament to not fail its people or in its duty to represent and protect all of

society as global concern over the increasingly fraught situation in the country mounts.

Calling for an immediate end to months of violence and a climate of fear following a political crisis that has left hundreds of people dead

and hundreds of thousands displaced across borders, IPU is stressing the need for the Burundian Parliament and its Members to be part

Ugandan named Commonwealth Youth Worker of the Year 2015

The Commonwealth-wide Youth Worker of the Year for 2015 has been awarded to Victor Ochen, founder of the African Youth Initiative Network, a Ugandan NGO that works to empower young people to promote democratic leadership and civic engagement in communities that have faced conflict.

Zambian Youths Participate at the 7th Commonwealth Youth Parliament In Darwin, Australia

Ms. Esther Mwenya Chansa at 7th Commonwealth Youth Parliament

Two Zambian youth have recently participated at the 7th Commonwealth Youth Parliament, which has been hosted by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory in Darwin, Australia from 1st to 5th November 2015.

IPU condemns attacks on MPs in Cambodia and Myanmar

The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) has condemned physical attacks on MPs in Cambodia and Myanmar this week, which have left three politicians in hospital.
IPU is calling for authorities in both countries to ensure greater protection of parliamentarians and freedom of assembly and expression as a cornerstone of democratic practice.

Fiji re-joins Global Parliamentary Community

The readmission of Fiji into the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) has been welcomed by the Organization as a significant step forward in ongoing efforts to cement democracy in the country and in IPU’s engagement with parliaments from Pacific Ocean Island nations.
The formal readmission at the opening session of IPU’s 133rd Assembly in Geneva today increases the Organization’s membership to 167 national parliaments.

Pioneering Child Rights Policy from Zanzibar wins distinguished international award

Future Policy Award 2015: Gold goes to Zanzibar’s Children’s Act, Maryland, U.S. and Finland win silverP

Embargoed to 1900 CET 20 October

Hamburg/Geneva/New York – 20 October 2015: Zanzibar’s pioneering child rights law is the winner of the 2015 Future Policy Award on securing children’s rights, beating 29 other nominated policies to the prize. The Award will be presented at a ceremony in Geneva today by the World Future Council, the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and UNICEF during the 133rd IPU Assembly.