The European Union and the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States have reached a new agreement in a move designed to strengthen their partnership.
“The new agreement modernises and deepens the partnership between the EU and the 79 members of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States.Together we are a population of 1.5 billion people and we represent more than half of the seats at the United Nations,” Jutta Urpilainen, EU Commissioner for International Partnerships, said in a statement.
The alliance between the European Union and 79 African, Caribbean and Pacific States (ACP) is one of the EU’s oldest and most expansive cooperations with other countries.
The ACP-EU Dialogue on Migration and Development was launched after the 2010 Ouagadougou revision of the provisions of Article 13 on Migration of the Cotonou Agreement of 2000.
The treaty aimed to reduce and eventually eradicate poverty while committing to sustainable development and the gradual integration of ACP countries into the world economy. This new treaty will replace the Cotonou Agreement.
Partners have boosted their commitments in areas including human rights, democracy and governance, peace and security, trade and human development. The latter incorporates health, education and gender equality, as well as environmental sustainability, climate change and migration.
Robert Dussey, Togo’s foreign minister, said that the deal’s conclusion was no easy feat.
“I think it was most difficult to figure out the issues that separate us,” he told DW. “We mainly disagreed on migration, human rights issues and sexual orientation.”
He later added, “We have agreed on a common objective of fostering a political and social economic development. We have agreed on the need to improve the social well-being of citizens in our countries and globally.”
Europe has been working overtime to secure its relations with Africa since China has superseded its influence on the continent over recent years.