OACPS-EU JPA Co-presidents call on EU Council to sign new agreement.

07-03-2023 18:32
Carlos Zorrinho and Ana Rita Sithole, co-presidents of the ACP-EU JPA presiding the Joint committee
ACP-EU JPA Co-Presidents-Joint committee vote on 20230302.jpg © Dolores Ruiz
Two years after the conclusion of negotiations on a new partnership agreement, the Post-Cotonou Agreement still has not been signed.

2 March 2023

Following the meeting of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) Bureau in Brussels on 2 March 2023, to prepare for the 43rd JPA plenary session that will take place at the end of June 2023, the two Co-Presidents of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) Carlos Zorrinho (S&D, PT) and Ana Rita Sithole (Mozambique) said: "The Cotonou Agreement has been extended multiple times. The latest extension will expire at the end of June 2023, leading to a legal gap that would mean that the JPA meetings could no longer take place. Time is running out. With one EU member state still refusing to accept the new Agreement, we call on the EU Council and the Swedish Council Presidency to not spare any efforts to quickly sign the new agreement."

The two Co-Presidents stress the urgency of replacing the current agreement, now over 20 years old, with a new, modern, partnership agreement between equals, that can act as a multilateral platform for political dialogue and economic and social cooperation.

They also underline that the new agreement is better adapted to current and future common challenges linked to the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development, such asclimate change,promoting human rights, peace and stability, governance and growth.

The two Co-Presidents strongly believe that the delayed signing of the Agreement means delayed development and sends the wrong signals about our partnership, and therefore the both sides should sign the new agreement by 30 June 2023.


The three committees and the Bureau of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly met in Brussels on 1-2 March 2023. The meeting agendas and other meeting documents are available here.