The European Union and CARIFORUM met for the first CARIFORUM-EU Political Dialogue at Kingston, Jamaica, to discuss issues of interest and relevance to both parties within the framework of the upcoming EU-CARIFORUM Summit to take place in Madrid on 17 May 2010. There was a fruitful exchange of views on hemispheric issues related to Latin America and the Caribbean and the growing cooperation taking place between CARIFORUM countries and hemispheric neighbours, specifically the Rio Group, the Latin American and Caribbean Integration Development Process (CALC), UNASUR and the Latin American Bolivarian Alliance (ALBA). Other challenges facing the Caribbean were discussed and special mention was made of the global financial crisis, regional food security, the high dependence on energy and problems related to climate change and natural disasters. In this context the idea was mooted to hold a bi-regional EU- CARIFORUM conference on climate change ahead of COP 16 in Cancun. The European Union expressed its willingness to work closely with partners to find common ground and to provide assistance to the Caribbean region. Both sides exchanged views on the operationalisation of an effective EU-Caribbean strategy which included an analysis of the implications of the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon and the relations with the European Union.
Source: Conseil de l'Union européenne