Jamaica’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Honourable Kamina Johnson Smith was appointed on Tuesday, 5th December 2017, to preside over the Council of Ministers of the ACP Group of Countries, for a six-month period from February to July 2018.
The Minister’s appointment was affirmed during the 106th Session of the Council currently convening in Brussels. Correspondingly, Jamaica’s Ambassador in Brussels will oversee the discussions at the level of the Committee of Ambassadors.
Jamaica’s presidency of the Council is expected to culminate in the ACP Group’s submission, by August 2018, of its negotiating position with the EU. Minister Johnson Smith stated that “Jamaica is honoured by this role which comes at a time when the 79-member ACP Group of Countries is contemplating its position ahead of the expiry of the Cotonou Partnership Agreement with the European Union, and ahead of the beginning of negotiations for a successor arrangement”.
Minister Johnson Smith led Jamaica’s delegation to the 106th Session of the ACP Council of Ministers currently meeting in Brussels. The Meeting considered and took decisions in relation to its preparations for the post-Cotonou engagement, development cooperation and the implementation of current Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) Programmes, among other matters.