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ACP countries, EU meet in Brussels

The Gabonese Economy and Trade Minister, Paul Bunduku-Latha, will Friday in Brussels, jointly preside with Soraya Rodriguez, the Spanish Secretary of State for international cooperation, over the activities of the Council of Ministers of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries and those of the European Union (EU) for the second quinquennial review of the Cotonou Agreement, signed in June 2000 between the two blocs.

Both parties, which would have concluded the second Revision of the Cotonou Agreement in February, have already agreed on several points.

The work of the Joint ACP-EU Council of ministers will focus on the outstanding issues, including the “opt out” clause required by the ACP for a number of provisions when the revised text was ratified.

Moreover, the ACP states remain reluctant to the issue of immigration regarding the readmission of illegal immigrants found in Europe.

The last point, which remained unresolved, concerns the political dialogue.

Gabon is the president of the ACP Group, while Spain takes over the rotating Presidency of the European Union.

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