Brussels, 19 October 2020/OACPS: In the lead-up to the 56th Session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS), to be held virtually on 23 October 2020, the Co-Presidents of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) released a Statement on maintaining the JPA in the future Partnership Agreement between the European Union (EU) and the OACPS.

Recalling the critical role played by the ACP-EU JPA in advancing the democratic ideas of the Partnership as well as consolidating parliamentary diplomacy and facilitating joint action, the Co-Presidents, Mr. Carlos Zorrinho, MEP and Mr. Faumuina Liuga, MP of Samoa, welcomed the progress made so far by the Chief Negotiators on post-Cotonou Negotiations and took note that efforts were underway to conclude the negotiations. They remained optimistic that the proposed new agreement would continue to meet the aspirations of the citizens of the Member States of the OACPS and the EU.

The Co-Presidents welcomed the support by the current German Presidency of the Council of the EU for maintaining the JPA in the post-Cotonou Agreement and reiterated the need to ensure that in the new agreement, the JPA would have organisational autonomy and be able to meet on an annual basis.

Prior to Friday’s virtual 56th Session, which will be held simultaneously across all EU and OACPS regions, the standing committees on Political Affairs; Economic Development, Finance and Trade; Social Affairs and the Environment will consider various reports in meetings carded from 19 to 22 October.

The ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly is the only forum where parliamentary representatives from the OACPS can highlight their successes and exchange best practices with the EU and vice versa. It also provides an opportunity for elected representatives from Member States of the OACPS to address their concerns directly to the EU and its institutions and inform themselves of the state of negotiations on trade agreements with their countries.

Click HERE for the full Joint Statement.