Answer given by Ms Urpilainen on behalf of the European Commission
The initialling of the post-Cotonou agreement by the respective Chief Negotiators took place on 15 April 2021 and marked the end of the political negotiations. Before the new agreement can be signed and provisionally applied, the Parties have to complete their respective internal approval procedures.
In this context, the text underwent both legal and lawyer-linguist revisions and its legal nature, which was kept under brackets in the initialled text, was defined.
Therefore, while the substance of the agreement will not be different from the version initialled on 15 April, the text will be not be identical to the initialled version of 15 April 2021.
The signature of the new agreement represents an important priority for the Commission. The Commission submitted its proposal for signature and provisional application of an EU-only agreement to the Council on 11 June 2021.
Since then, discussions are still ongoing at the level of the ACP Council Working Party and with the French Presidency of the Council of the EU. No specific target date has been set for the signing of the post-Cotonou Agreement.
No meeting specifically on the post-Cotonou agreement has been scheduled between the Commission and the OACPS at this date. However, the Commission is in regular contact with the OACPS Secretariat/side and are jointly preparing for the implementation of the new OACPS-EU Partnership Agreement.
In the meantime, the provisions of the Cotonou Agreement that was initially due to expire in February 2020 have been extended until 30 June 2022 , unless the new partnership agreement between the EU and the OACPS States is provisionally applied or enters into force before that date.
-  COM(2021) 312 final, https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX%3A52021PC0312&qid=1637063568154