(45th Session of the Joint OACPS-EU Council of Ministers, EU Council, Brussels - Wednesday, 7 December 2022) - After three years of interruption, as the two sides took time off to concentrate on the negotiations of a new OACPS-EU Partnership Agreement, the 45th ACP-EU Council of Ministers was held on 29 November 2022.
Mr Petr FIALA, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic for the EU and Senator the Hon. Dr Amery Browne, Minister of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs of the Republic of Trinidad And Tobago for the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific states (OACPS), presided over the meeting.
The relaunch of OACPS-EU joint meetings at ministerial level afforded the Ministers time to take stock of the Partnership, propel and guide the cooperation in a changing world, and exchange views on several crucial and topical bilateral and global matters.
Dr Browne said: “The OACPS and EU states are facing major challenges such as those related to global warming and the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as various conflicts affecting some of our countries, including the war in Ukraine”.
The Ministerial meeting engaged in political exchanges, including the impact of the war in Ukraine and its devastating global reach, particularly in food and energy security.
Other issues addressed by the Ministers included the global challenges and the war in Ukraine, which have been a turning point in international relations that has changed the post-Cold War international order.
The OACPS expressed concern at the delay of the post-Cotonou Partnership Agreement and hoped that all constraints would be overcome for its signing in Samoa in May 2023.
The OACPS hopes that the Global Gateway strategy and the NDICI-Global Europe will be implemented, bearing in mind the concerns of the benefitting countries.
OACPS members noted that blacklisting was damaging their economies and called for more dialogue in dealing with the matter. They affirmed that they are not against reinforcing international efforts for an international approach to promote tax governance and financial integrity. They highlighted the closure of bank accounts of missions accredited to the EU and Belgium, which had caused many financial difficulties.
OACPS members affirmed that funding for the Global Gateway strategy should come with technical training to use the aid effectively.
The OACPS called for a Globalized Biodiversity Framework that will halt biodiversity loss for the benefit of the planet.
The OACPS ministers called on the EU support for efforts by Vanuatu (and the OACPS) to obtain an ICJ opinion on climate change.
The OACPS called for a substantial increase in new, predictable, adequate, and accessible financial resources for effectively implementing the post-2020 global biodiversity framework, including establishing a dedicated fund for Biodiversity as a critical outcome from Montreal.
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