Brussels, 7 June 2022/OACPS: The Secretariat of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS), will, for the first time in two years, open its doors for live participation at the 114th Session of the Council of Ministers.

The official opening on 8 June 2022 will be preceded by three ministerial meetings on Trade, Development Finance Cooperation and of the Ad Hoc Contact Group on the EU list of non-cooperative tax jurisdiction and that of the third countries regarding anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism.

Key items on the Agenda of the 114th Council Meeting include an update on the State of play of the new OACPS-EU Partnership Agreement, which was initialled by the OACPS and EU Chief Negotiators in April 2021, but which still needs to be finalised; the ongoing restructuring of the OACPS Secretariat and the upcoming 10th Summit of OACPS Heads of State and Government, which is to take place in December 2022 in Luanda, Angola.

Participants at the hybrid meeting will also discuss the work undertaken by the five departments of the OACPS on ongoing projects financed by the European Development Fund (EDF), in the areas of trade, fisheries and aquaculture, and negotiations with the European Union (EU) over its list of non-cooperative tax jurisdictions and that of third countries.

H.E. Mrs Sylvie Baïpo Temon, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Central African Republic and President-in-Office of the OACPS Council of Ministers, will chair the two-day Session, as well as the meeting of the Bureau of the Council of Ministers.

At the meeting of the Bureau of the Council, which takes place one day after the OACPS celebrated the 2nd anniversary of OACPS Foundation Day following the entry-into-force of the revised Georgetown Agreement in 2020, OACPS Secretary-General, H.E. Mr Georges Rebelo Pinto Chikoti, pointed out the need to reinforce OACPS’ partnerships and to increase cooperation at regional and international levels. He stressed that this was of paramount importance to aid in the recovery of Member States following the COVID-19 pandemic, which has provoked a surge in the debt repayments of some of the OACPS’ most economically-challenged States.

The Council of Ministers is the OACPS’ main decision-making body. It is the supreme body responsible for implementing the guidelines laid down by the Summit. The Council is composed of a member of Government from each Member of the OACPS or a government-designated representative and meets twice annually in ordinary sessions.