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Cablegate: France: Still Reserved On Partnership for Democratic

VZCZCXYZ0012
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHFR #3973 2641637
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 211637Z SEP 07
FM AMEMBASSY PARIS
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 0347

UNCLAS PARIS 003973

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

SIPDIS

EUR/WE, S/P FOR SOKOLSKY AND GERAN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KDEM EAID FR
SUBJECT: FRANCE: STILL RESERVED ON PARTNERSHIP FOR DEMOCRATIC
GOVERNANCE

REF: SECSTATE 131040

1. (SBU) Emboffs have discussed the Partnership for Democratic
governance (PDG) on several occasions with French officials in
recent weeks. They have told us they do not believe France will
join as a founding member, but have
not excluded deeper involvement at some later date.

2. (SBU) In a meeting with Econ M/C September 14, Jean-Marc
Chataigner, Chief of Staff to Secretary of State for Cooperation
and Development Jean-Marie Bockel said that though a final
decision on becoming a founding member had not been made, French
reservations remained. He characterized the proposal as "much
improved" from the original idea, but clearly thought that
France would wait
and see how it worked in practice. He emphasized that France
had not blocked the project from going forward in the OECD, and
that it would support it in a limited way through UNDP.

3. (SBU) Econoff delivered reftel demarche to MFA Office
Director for Multilateral Economic and Financial Affairs Cyrille
Pierre September 21. Pierre noted French reservations about the
sustainability of governance capacity building programs, and a
more philosophical concern about externalizing sovereign
functions of government. That said, France did not exclude
deeper
participation in the PDG depending on how well it worked with
UNDP and the transparency of the selection process for
contractors. The OECD had a good reputation in this domain, he
said.

4. (SBU) Comment: Both contacts gave a de facto "no" in the
most polite and tempered ways they could think of. We do not
believe that lobbying at a higher level would be effective at
this time but it is possible that the GOF will enhance support
for this program later, especially if it effectively targets one
or more countries of priority interest to the GOF.


Pekala

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