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Friday, 11 December 2009

Copenhagen Summit: EU and ACP countries coordinate strategies

On Friday 4 December representatives of the Swedish Presidency and the European Commission held consultations with the Ambassadors to Brussels of the 78 ACP countries. This was the most recent in a series of such meetings held during the Swedish Presidency, and the last one before the Copenhagen Conference. The main objective of the meeting was to identify key issues and areas where the EU and the ACP countries-together an alliance of 105 states-share interests and should work together during and after the Copenhagen Conference. The EU side-Ola Sohlström, Chair of the Council's ACP Working Party, and Stefano Manservisi, Director General for Development in the European Commission-outlined the EU's main objectives and priorities going into the negotiations. This was followed by a constructive debate during which ACP Ambassadors, chaired by the Malawi Ambassador HE Brave Ndisale, stressed the need for an ambitious outcome and one that allowed immediate action. There was a broad consensus on the need to continue to work together in order to reach an ambitious and comprehensive agreement with a common but differentiated responsibility to forcefully address climate change. It was also noted that for many countries-including small island developing states-climate change constitutes a challenge to their very survival. A number of concrete proposals for joint action and were also made and will be discussed further.

Source: EU Presidency