Following the vote today in Plenary, the European Parliament backed a resolution calling for a comprehensive renewal of the post-Cotonou partnership agreement based on a reinforced commitment to poverty-alleviation and human rights, including robust monitoring and accountability requirements. S&Ds reiterated that it is key that the agreement has a leading role for civil society and an autonomous, strong parliamentary dimension in order to bring political dialogue closer to the citizens and tackle the common challenges we face.
In this regard, the S&D Group will be at the forefront in this week's plenary session on the African Caribbean Pacific (ACP) – EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, which this year is taking place in the European Parliament in Brussels.
S&D coordinator in the development committee, Norbert Neuser, added:
“The partnership of the EU and 79 African, Caribbean and Pacific States is crucial for our common future and wellbeing, as we face common challenges and opportunities. This is the reason why the post-Cotonou Agreement must reflect the highest comprehensive framework of cooperation possible in terms of development, political dialogue and trade.
“The current Cotonou Agreement will expire in 2020. This gives us a unique opportunity to adapt the new one to the challenges our world faces today, such as migration and climate change.
“Most important for us is the strengthening of the parliamentary dimension, the exchange with ACP parliamentarians and a strong participation of civil society. Furthermore, we insist on an explicit accountability and monitoring mechanism for citizens and civil society to enable them to report cases of breaches of human rights obligations. The post-Cotonou Agreement could thus become not only a fundamental tool of growth and development, but also a model of standing cooperation and regular dialogue to other global partners, such as Russia and China.”
The chair of the European Parliament’s development committee, Linda McAvan, said:
“In the current global climate, the EU's commitment to a multilateral system is more important than ever. Continuing our strong partnership with the ACP countries not only shows our ongoing commitment to development in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific, but also shows our intention to work with our allies and partners on common global challenges. Attempts from some quarters to derail the agreement of a new deal with the ACP countries over the issue of migration are at best short sighted, and at worst pose a serious threat to international development and the EU's global influence. The European Parliament has today demonstrated that these concerns must be resisted and a position on a replacement for Cotonou reached in the Council as soon as possible.”