The milestone in the work of the North-South Centre of the Council of Europe (NSC-CoE) in Africa-Europe Youth Cooperation was the 1st Africa-Europe Youth Summit (AEYS), held in Lisbon in 2007.

The final declaration of the AEYS, presented to the Summit of Heads of State and Government, called for an Africa-Europe Youth programme that would enable exchanges between and the capacity-building of youth organisations, creating the framework and conditions for their active participation in the development of their societies, in decision/policy-making and in the implementation of the EU-Africa Strategic partnership.

The Africa-Europe Youth Cooperation (AEYC) programme was led by the NSC-CoE in collaboration with the European Union, the African Union, the Council of Europe, the European Youth Forum and the Pan-African Youth Union. Other relevant actors such as the African Diaspora Youth Network Europe (ADYNE) and the Network of International Youth Organizations in Africa (NIYOA) would eventually appear and join the partnership.

 In 2008, the NSC-CoE and the European Commission (EuropeAid) signed the first Joint Management Agreement – JMA (2009-2011), for the development of an Africa-Europe dimension of the Youth Co-operation programme of the NSC-CoE. Besides the JMA, the NSC-CoE was also responsible for the implementation of Africa-Europe cooperation activities under the framework of the EU-CoE youth partnership until 2012.

In 2012 the first JMA was extended, allowing the continuation of the work developed until the signature of the new JMA in September 2012 for the period 2013-2015.