The successor to Cotonou Partnership Agreement between the African Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) States and the European Union must take into account the inherent and exogenous vulnerabilities of the Caribbean Forum of the ACP States (CARIFORUM) as critical elements in the negotiations.
A Statement of the CARIFORUM Council of Ministers said that successor agreement also had to the take into account the development priorities of the ACP, including CARIFORUM’s priorities, and must aim at sustainable, inclusive and resilient development of the ACP regions.
The Council of Ministers met in St. Kitts and Nevis, 26-27 March, 2018.
- At the opening ceremony, CARIFORUM Director General, Mr. Percival Marie, said that the meeting was timely and extremely vital.
“The meeting is held at a crucial time when post Cotonou negotiations between the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group of States and the European Union are about to commence. This meeting is also held when the European Union and the United Kingdom are in discussions on the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union,” said the Director General.
“We are also in discussion with the United Kingdom in a rollover agreement between the Caribbean region and the United Kingdom to ensure that there is a smooth transition without any loss of trading opportunities between the Caribbean and the United Kingdom when the United Kingdom would have left the European Union,” he added.
Please see Statement below:
THE CARIFORUM COUNCIL OF MINISTERS MEETING IN SPECIAL SESSION IN ST. KITTS AND NEVIS ON THE 26th and 27th MARCH 2018:
RECOGNISING the changing global context in which negotiations for the successor to Cotonou Partnership Agreement between the ACP and the European Union will take place;
FURTHER RECOGNISING the fundamental importance and relevance of recent global agreements including Agenda 2030, the Paris Declaration on Climate Change and International Agreements on development financing;
- CARIFORUM States share common values and common interests with the African and Pacific States of the ACP Group and remain committed to further building the partnership with the EU.
- The Intra ACP and ACP-EU relationships are important, meaningful and valuable for CARIFORUM States.
- The successor agreement must be a legally binding agreement built on the acquis and negotiated with the EU at the all- ACP level. In this regard, CARIFORUM has agreed its negotiating positions within the context of the ACP negotiating framework.
- The successor agreement must, inter alia:
- take into account the inherent and exogenous vulnerabilities of CARIFORUM States as critical elements in these negotiations;
- secure continued access to development financing for CARIFORUM States;
- take into account the development priorities of the ACP, including CARIFORUM’s priorities, and must aim at sustainable, inclusive and resilient development of the ACP regions.
- CARIFORUM States will remain actively engaged in the ACP preparatory process leading up to the adoption of the ACP negotiating mandate.