The two-day ordinary meeting of Heads of State and Governments of the member countries of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS ) due open on Friday in Yamoussoukro, the political capital of Cote d’Ivoire, will discuss the bloc’s relation with the European Union and the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs).
During the summit, the West African leaders will also focus on the progress of the political situation in Mali and Guinea Bissau with a memorandum to be presented by the President of the ECOWAS Commission.
The Heads of State and Governments will also take a close look at the draft agreements, as well as reservations made by Nigeria following the meeting of the Monitoring Committee of the Economic Partnership Agreements with the European Union held on 17 February in Dakar
According the Ivorian Senior Minister in charge of Foreign Affairs, Charles Koffi Diby, the outcome of the meeting in Dakar was in line with the expectations of the Heads of State who insisted on the need for ECOWAS to own the negotiations with the European bloc on the economic partnership agreements.
The Ivorian top diplomat said that Friday’s summit should be an opportunity for the countries of the region to consolidate their achievements and outline ways and means of addressing the new threats to the region’s stability including piracy, organized crime and terrorism.