Meeting of the Follow-up Committee ACP-EU
Países ACP e África
Desde a primeira Convenção de Lomé (1975) até ao Acordo de Cotonu (2000-2021), as parcerias UE ACP regeram as relações entre a UE e 79 países do Grupo dos Estados de África, das Caraíbas e do Pacífico (ACP), que recentemente passou a ser a Organização dos Estados de África, Caraíbas e Pacífico (OEACP).
Durante este período, o CESE, juntamente com a sociedade civil dos países ACP, lutou pelo reconhecimento do papel fundamental que cabe aos operadores não estatais no processo de desenvolvimento, o que acabou por acontecer com a assinatura do Acordo de Cotonou, que conferiu mandato ao CESE para organizar atividades e consultas com os meios económicos e sociais ACP UE, a fim de recolher os pontos de vista da sociedade civil e oferecer-lhe a oportunidade de fazer ouvir a sua voz. O objetivo consiste em promover intercâmbios e formular recomendações sobre assuntos e políticas pertinentes para as relações UE-ACP, que posteriormente são transmitidas aos dirigentes da UE e dos países ACP.
Em termos práticos, as atividades do CESE no domínio das relações UE-OEACP são na sua maioria realizadas sob a orientação de um Comité de Acompanhamento UE-ACP, que integra membros do CESE e representantes dos meios económicos e sociais dos países ACP.
O Comité de Acompanhamento UE-ACP mantém contactos regulares com os representantes da sociedade civil nos países ACP a diferentes níveis através de:
- Reuniões regulares do Comité de Acompanhamento UE-ACP,
- Seminários regionais nos países ACP, oferecendo um fórum para debater temas de interesse comum com os representantes da sociedade civil, alternadamente em regiões diferentes,;
- Encontros gerais trienais dos meios económicos e sociais ACP-UE.
O CESE também mantém contactos regulares com representantes dos meios económicos e sociais da União Africana, no âmbito da Estratégia Conjunta África UE. Em particular, o CESE realiza reuniões anuais com a Rede dos Atores Económicos e Sociais UE-África.
O CESE mantém, há muitos anos, um contacto regular com a Assembleia Parlamentar Paritária ACP UE através da apresentação de um relatório sobre as suas atividades nas sessões da Assembleia Plenária.
O CESE está igualmente em contacto estreito com organizações internacionais de empregadores, trabalhadores, agricultores, cooperativas e consumidores. Estas organizações nomeiam os representantes dos países ACP convidados para as reuniões organizadas pelo CESE, incluindo o Comité de Acompanhamento UE-ACP.
The EESC organised a regional seminar in Eastern and Southern Africa, which comprises the Indian Ocean islands (Comoros, Madagascar, Mauritius and Seychelles), countries from the Horn of Africa (Djibouti, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Sudan) and some countries of Southern Africa (Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe).
The regional seminar took place in Mauritius, on 21-22 November 2019.
The sixth meeting of the EU-Africa Economic and Social Stakeholders' Network took place in Brussels, Belgium, on 3 and 4 July 2019. A political declaration was adopted by the network to be addressed to the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and the African Union.
On the basis of the Cotonou agreement, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is mandated to organise consultation sessions and meetings of ACP-EU economic and social interest groups in order to voice these actors' views on the ACP-EU partnership and foster cooperation between civil society organisations.
Within this framework, the EESC organises regional seminars every year in one of the ACP regions.
This year, the EESC is organising a regional seminar in Windhoek (Namibia) on 8-9 November 2018.
The EU-Africa economic and social stakeholders' network will first deal with the up-coming EU-Africa Action Plan for the period 2018-2020. The annual meeting will specifically address migration and economic issues, focusing on the implications for young people. The youth focus is essential as young people clearly represent an increasingly important proportion of African populations. Moreover, youth unemployment in both Africa and Europe is a shared concern of economic and social actors. It is helping to feed migration flows, especially for young Africans who are facing a lack of prospects.
The Consultative Committee (CC) is one of the 5 institutions foreseen in the EU-CARIFORUM Economic Partnership Agreement. The CC is composed of 40 (25 from the CARIFORM side and 15 from the EU side) standing representatives of organisations of the civil society representing employers' organisations, trade unions, other economic, social and non-governmental organisations, including development and environmental organisations; and the academic community.
The Joint Africa-EU Strategy (JAES) has been the main framework for relations between the continents of Europe and Africa since 2007. Its goal is to develop a shared vision of the main global issues whilst simultaneously strengthening cooperation in a broad range of areas such as development, governance, human rights, trade, regional integration, food security and migration. To this end, meetings of EU-African economic and social stakeholders are held on a regular basis.
Under the auspices of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) organises meetings with ACP and EU economic and social interest groups. This role has been confirmed by the Cotonou Agreement, which mandates the EESC to organise consultation sessions and meetings of ACP and EU economic and social interest groups (Protocol 1).
Within this framework, the EESC organises general meetings in Brussels every three years, with delegates from the 78 ACP countries, together with representatives of the EU institutions, national economic and social councils, the secretariat of the ACP Group of States, EU and ACP states' diplomatic missions, NGOs and other interested parties. These general meetings are in addition to the regional seminars, which take place in the ACP regions once a year.
The social economy is prominent in everyday life and in the productive activity of large regions of the world and makes a decisive contribution to improving the living and working conditions of millions of people. However, the social economy is not specifically recognised as a sector in the EU development cooperation programmes.One of the principal aims of the opinion is that the external dimension of the EU’s programmes and initiatives should establish support measures specifically targeted at boosting businesses and organisations in the social economy.
The EESC organises regional seminars every year in an ACP region –this year, in Eastern Africa (Nairobi) on 4‑5 July 2016, with three main topics of discussion:
- Implementation of the SDGs - The Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and Eastern African States. - The post-Cotonou agenda.
At the end of the seminar, a final declaration will be issued that will be forwarded to the partners of the Cotonou agreement.
Around 60 representatives of economic and social actors as well as political authorities and international organisations will attend the seminar.