OACPS/EU negotiations edge closer to final successor agreement
July 17, 2020 – Guyana today participated in the ninth session of the Chief Negotiators of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) and the European Union (EU), which was held via videoconference.
Over the past two days, the Organisation’s Central Negotiating Group (CNG-M) engaged in re-negotiating a successor agreement to the Cotonou Accord as they focused on stock-taking of the process, endorsing texts from the technical level negotiations, and providing political guidance on the outstanding issues.
Head of the Guyana delegation and Vice-Chair and Lead Ministerial Negotiator for the Caribbean Protocol, the Honourable Carl B. Greenidge, noted that the negotiations were in the final stage and scheduled to be concluded shortly.
“It has been a very engaging process that was also impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. These factors will certainly be reflected in the type of agreement concluded,” he stated.
Further, Mr. Greenidge explained that, “The agreement is unique in that it is resultant of a partnership which has agreed procedures for dispute resolution and for it to be negotiated.”
The OACPS CNG-M is chaired by Professor Robert Dussey, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and African Integration of Togo, and include the Honourable Carl B. Greenidge as Vice-Chair and Lead Ministerial Negotiator for the Caribbean Protocol, and the Honourable Kamina Johnson-Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade of Jamaica, as the Caribbean representatives.
The Cotonou Partnership Agreement between the ACP and EU was signed in 2000 and expired in March 2020. Formal negotiations for a successor arrangement were launched in September 2018. This Agreement provides the basis for cooperation and donor support with the EU at the bilateral and multilateral levels. The EU is the largest provider of concessional development funds and assistance to Guyana.