The Cotonou Agreement

The Cotonou Agreement establishes three main EU-African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Joint Institutions:

1. ACP-EU Council of Ministers: meets annually at Ministerial level to discuss matters of common interest in EU-ACP relations. It gathers representatives from all ACP and EU countries, and the European Commission and, following the Lisbon Treaty, the European External Action Service (EEAS). Another effect of post-Lisbon is that the co-chair on the EU side is High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy - Catherine Ashton, as she presides over the Foreign Affairs Council (Treaty of the European Union, article 18).

2. ACP-EU Committee of Ambassadors: meets generally to prepare for the Joint Ministerial Council. It is composed at ambassadorial level by representatives from all EU and ACP member states, in addition to the European Commission. The EEAS also attends.

3. ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly:  a unique body whose goal is to bring together elected representatives of EU and ACP countries. The bulk of its activities relate to the promotion of human rights, democracy and the rule of law. It takes place twice a year, with a venue rotating between EU and ACP countries. More information can be found here.

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