PRESS RELEASE BY THE MINISTRY FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS: Minister for Foreign Affairs George W. Vella co-chairs the ACP-EU Council of Ministers

The future of post-2020 relations between ACP countries and the EU was at the centre of discussions at the ACP-EU Council of Ministers that convened in Brussels on 5th May 2017. It was co-chaired by Minister for Foreign Affairs George W. Vella on behalf of the European Union, and Minister of Finance and Economic Cooperation of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, President-in-Office of the ACP Council of Ministers Abraham Tekeste. The ACP-EU Council of Ministers is the supreme institution of the ACP-EU Partnership. Present for the meeting were the Ministers of the ACP and EU countries, together with European Commissioner for International Development Neven Mimica, and representatives from the European Investment Bank.

The future of EU-ACP relations after 2020, with the Cotonou Partnership for Development linking the EU to 78 developing countries in the ACP (Africa, Caribbean, Pacific) group, is amongst the foremost dossiers being taken forward by Minister Vella as part of the Maltese Presidency’s programme. Another positive outcome of the Maltese Presidency will be the adoption of the new European Consensus on Development, which is the international development policy of the European Union. This is expected to be adopted at the upcoming Foreign Affairs Council of International Development meeting on 19 May 2017.

This joint Ministerial meeting was the first opportunity for the two sides to hold a discussion pursuant to the debate held at the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council of November 2016 on the option of a partnership, with tailor-made regional agreements taking into account the specificities of the regions and the countries in this partnership. The agenda of the discussions also centered on the implementation of Agenda 2030, the further development of economic and trade cooperation, migration, and climate change.

As part of the Presidency Programme, Malta will be hosting The ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly from 19 to 21 June 2017.

Source: Government of Malta