ACP-EU-JPA: Geingob to open Joint Parliamentary Assembly

09 Jun 2016 17:20pm
WINDHOEK, 09 JUN (NAMPA) - President Hage Geingob is expected to officially open the 31st plenary session of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries and European Union Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) on Monday.
The JPA will take place in Windhoek from 13 to 15 June and is expected to be attended by about 350 Parliamentarians from 28 EU countries and 79 ACP states.
The session will be chaired by co-presidents Louis Michel of the European Parliament and Netty Baldeh of Gambia for the ACP countries and will be preceded by meetings of the three standing committees on Saturday.
These are the Committee on Economic Development, Finance and Trade; the Committee on Political Affairs; and the Committee on Social Affairs and Environment.
Parliamentarians from the ACP Assembly are in Windhoek for a separately held two-day meeting before the ACP-EU JPA next week.
The JPA will provide the opportunity to have a strategic discussion on the future of partnerships between the EU and ACP countries after 2020.
The Cotonou partnership agreement signed by members in 2000, which governs relations between ACP countries and the EU, will expire in 2020.
A statement from the office of European Union mission to Namibia issued Thursday reads: “While the three pillars of this framework addressing political dialogue, development cooperation and trade have generally served their purpose well, there are clear signs that substantive changes have occurred within the ACP group, the EU and the wider international landscape, which calls for a different articulation of future relations. A future partnership and framework would therefore need to take on board key issues such as poverty reduction, the Sustainable Development Goals and the Economic Partnership Agreements.”
Furthermore, the JPA will debate and vote on three resolutions – on the Continental Free Trade Area in Africa; opportunities to stimulate exchanges on the African continent; and potential benefits for ACP countries.
Migration between ACP countries and the Member States of the European Union; causes, consequences and strategies for joint management and improved participatory governance through decentralisation and strengthening of local governance will also be discussed.