On the 1st of January 2017, the cooperation between the National Assembly of Zambia (NAZ) and the Austrian Parliament began within the framework of the NorthSouth Dialogue of Parliaments. The priorities and the work program for the next three years were already laid down during the course of 2016 in several delegation visits in Vienna and Lusaka. In addition to an intensive cooperation between the two parliaments at the administrative and technical level, a Joint Parliamentary Peer Group has also been set up at the political level, which focusses on the objectives and the implementation of SDG 4 "Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all".
The project aims to strengthen the two parliaments in Zambia and Austria in their positions in the democratic system of their countries and to support their influence on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This is achieved through peer-to-peer learning processes, which allow the exchange of ideas and experiences that are relevant to both Members of Parliament and Parliament as an institution. It is also important to improve the information flow and the participation of the citizens in the parliamentary processes.
The current Newsletter of the NorthSouthDialogue (04/2017) includes an overview of the new cooperation between the Zambian and Austrian parliaments and an analysis of SDG 4.
From 7th to 13th of May 2017 a delegation of Zambian MPs visited Austria to formally establish the Joint Parliamentary Peer Group, but also to get information about the Austrian dual education system.
On the 22nd of June a discussion in the Austrian Parliament centered around the status of implementation and corresponding challenges with regard to SDG 4 in Austria.