Since 2011, the EU’s collective assistance to Syrians and Syrian refugees has amounted to over €9.2 billion, including €3 billion pledged at the London ‘Supporting Syria and the Region’ conference. Further pledges of support for countries in the region are expected at the April 2017 Brussels Conference on supporting the future of Syria and the region that the EU will co-host together with Germany, Kuwait, Norway, Qatar, the United Kingdom and the UN. The three broad themes of the conference are: support for the political process, support for reconciliation and stabilisation, and support for the region. The EU’s commitments towards countries in the region are further listed in EU compacts with Jordan and Lebanon, and in the Facility for Refugees in Turkey.
In addition, to allow for a more flexible and speedy response to shifting needs, the EU established the Madad Fund, with the overall objective of supporting the resilience of refugees from Syria, as well as that of the communities and administrations hosting them. As of 25 January 2017, pledges and contributions to the fund totalled over €932 million of the €1 billion target. Since the crisis began in 2011 the EU has gradually scaled up its support for countries in the region. In Lebanon, the European Commission’s assistance alone has reached almost €800 million, including more than €356 million from the humanitarian budget. In Jordan, Commission assistance amounts to some €657 million for Syrian refugees and host communities and is spent primarily on food aid and the provision of clean water and sanitation, as well as on health services and protection. The biggest share of the funding is destined for assistance to Turkey. In November 2015, the EU committed to provide Turkey with €3 billion – to be coordinated by the Refugee Facility for Turkey – in addition to €588 million for Syrian and Iraqi refugees already provided since the beginning of the crisis, including humanitarian aid as well as longer-term assistance. The Joint Action Plan, endorsed by EU leaders on 15 October 2015, identifies a series of collaborative actions to be implemented as a matter of urgency by the EU and Turkey.