The Programme Management Unit
The AUC China building

The GMES and Africa Support Programme Management Unit (PMU), is housed in the African Union Commission Science and Technology Division of the Department of Human Resources, Science and Technology (HRST). 

The PMU manages and coordinates the initiative across all relevant Directorates/Departments of the Commission. The Unit has the following core mandate and functions:

  • Updates a well-structured policy and strategic framework that guides the development and implementation of GMES-Africa program that will enable the continent to exploit its space resources (mainly the Earth Observation) in a more coordinated and systematic manner with the overarching objective of contributing to Africa’s socio-economic development.
  • Leads and manages the GMES and Africa 4-year project as part of the AUC Earth Observation program development and implementation.
  • Liaises with AUC corporate services and thematic Directorates to ensure the GMES-Africa program cross-cutting elements (supporting programs) are in place, fully operational, better integrated and efficient.
  • Leads the systematic coordination of GMES-Africa and the incorporation of earth observation and their applications into the Commission’s cooperation, development and political strategies at the regional and continental levels; and ensures enhanced intra-Africa and international cooperation in Earth Observation.
  • Acts as secretariat for both the Joint AU-EU Coordination Team of the GMES and Africa Initiative and the GMES-Africa Support programme. 
  • Engages national, regional and international partners and stakeholders through the development of an integrated engagement strategy and plan.
  • Leads and manages communication and information sharing as well awareness raising in respect to the GMES-Africa program and its benefits for African end-users.
  • Represents the AUC and promotes the GMES & Africa Initiative at national, regional and international fora (workshops, bilateral and multilateral meetings, conferences, seminars, etc.).
  • Liaise with the RICs and RECs to ensure the implementation of the two services at the national level. 
  • PMU organizes the continental forums in collaboration with RICs, RECs, and national networks in bringing stakeholders together.
  • The PMU develops annual work plan and budget proposals in consultation with relevant AUC stakeholders as well as with external partners.


The AUC (HRST Director) remains responsible for the approval of operational aspects of the GMES & Africa support programme such as annual work plans, budgets, recruitment, etc. HRST Director submits same to the contracting authority for approval together with the annual interim reports and payment requests.