Brussels, 24 September 2012/ ACP: The vibrant Caribbean locale of Paramaribo, Suriname will host the 24th session of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, an event that will gather more than 200 participants from Africa, the Caribbean, Pacific and Europe to discuss key issues of ACP-EU cooperation.

The 29th ACP Parliamentary Assembly will also take place at the same venue in the days leading up to the joint session.

The Speaker of the National Assembly of Suriname, Hon. Jennifer Geerlings-Simmons with ACP Secretary General Dr Mohamed Ibn Chambas in Brussels, to offer assurances that groundwork was well underway for a successful meeting. The country, which borders Brazil, Guyana and French Guyana, had put it its bid to host the key international forum in 2011.

ACP Secretary General Dr Mohamed Ibn Chambas affirmed his confidence:

“We have had the Secretariat’s team on the ground and by all reports, progress has been very satisfactory. Suriname has the backing of the entire Caribbean region in hosting this very significant meeting and the ACP stands in solidarity with the nation on this important opportunity. We have always had very good participation from Suriname at ACP meetings here in Brussels and we are sure they will be excellent hosts to both ACP representatives and our friends from the EU.”

The Speaker was accompanied by MP Dr Rabin Parmessar, who was also attending the ACP-EU parliamentary committee and bureau meetings at the European Parliament in Brussels from 19-21 September. To cater for visiting ACP MPs, the Suriname Embassy in Brussels set up temporary visa services on-site at the ACP House for speedy processing.

The full agenda for the Joint Parliamentary Assembly session in Suriname will be made available in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, updates and documents may be downloaded from ACP-EU JPA website:

(Photos from top: Suriname's Speaker of the National Assembly Hon. Jennifer Geerlings-Simmons presents a gift to ACP Secretary General Dr Mohamed Ibn Chambas; the Speaker with Co-President of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly Hon. Musikari Kombo and ACP Secretary General; Surinamese delegation, including Member of Parliament Dr rabin Parmessar)

– ACP Press