Political relations between Panama and the European Union (EU) take place within the framework of the EU-Central America Association Agreement (explanatory document) signed on 29 June 2012 in Tegucigalpa (Honduras). Panama was invited to the negotiations as an observer and became a signatory following its accession to the Secretariat for Central American Economic Integration (SIECA) in 2012.
This wide-ranging and ambitious agreement is based on three priorities: political dialogue, cooperation and the establishment of a free trade area.
The first of these priorities establishes mechanisms for political dialogue to enable a permanent platform to be maintained for the EU and Panama to exchange views on human rights, governance, sustainable development, climate change, democracy, gender equality, conflict prevention, combating drugs and arms trafficking, corruption and organized crime, among others.
Until the Association Agreement came into force, political relations between Panama and the EU were governed by the Political Dialogue and Cooperation Agreement, signed in 2003, which aimed to strengthen relations through the development of political dialogue and closer cooperation.