Romania’s Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu on Monday and Tuesday attended a European Union – Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) ministerial meeting where he showed that all countries need to be aware of the urgency of taking up courageous and coordinated policies to mitigate risks and effectively implement the provisions of the Paris Agreement.
“Minister Teodor Melescanu gave a speech on climate change, stressing the need for all countries, regardless of size and economic power, to be aware of the urgency of taking up courageous and coordinated policies to reduce risks and effectively implement the provisions of the Paris Agreement, to show openness and flexibility at the next COP 24 meeting. Teodor Melescanu called for a culture of prevention, the only way the world can secure its future, and invited the audience to an event Romania will host in 2019 while holding the presidency of the Council of the EU, on strengthening resilience against natural disasters,” according to Romania’s Foreign Affairs Ministry (MAE).
Also featuring on the agenda were multilateralism and strengthening co-operation between the two regions inside global fora, the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It also analysed the state of play in the implementation of the measures agreed upon by the two regions in the EU-CELAC 2015 Action Plan, in particular on combating climate change and implementing the provisions of the Paris Agreement.
The EU foreign ministers met in a separate format with counterparts from the founding states of the Pacific Alliance (Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru) to exchange views on strengthening their relationship.
An EU-CELAC joint declaration on the theme of “Building bridges and strengthening our partnership to face global challenges” was adopted on Tuesday. The text refers to strengthening multilateralism, building democratic, prosperous and inclusive societies, adhering to the principles of the UN Charter, reforming the UN system and the Security Council.
Melescanu met his counterparts from Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Jamaica, Peru and Uruguay. Their talks focused on the latest developments in and prospects for bilateral relations, with emphasis on stimulating political-diplomatic contacts, identifying new areas of economic and sectoral co-operation (education, agriculture, emergency management, social security, IT) and collaboration within regional organisations – CELAC, the Pacific Alliance, MERCOSUR, CARICOM and the UN.
CELAC became an interregional dialogue partner for the EU in 2011 after its establishment by merging two older regional co-operation mechanisms, the Rio Group and the Latin American and Caribbean Summit on Integration and Development (CALC), with the new organisation comprising for the first time all the states in the region, 33.
The first EU-CELAC summit took place in Santiago de Chile in January 2013, where Romania participated at the presidential level; the second was held in Brussels in June 2015, with the same participation. Prior to 2011, bi-regional dialogue had been conducted since 1999 at the EU-Latin America and Caribbean summits and inter-summit ministerial meetings.
The Latin American and Caribbean states are “key partners for the EU, given the common goals at global level, such as climate change, migration, security and non-proliferation,” according to MAE.