and Territories Association
On the 21st November 2022, high-level representatives of the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) met in Nouméa, New Caledonia, for the annual Ministerial Conference of the Overseas Countries and Territories Association (OCTA), the highest decision-making body of OCTA.
Hosted by the President of New Caledonia, Mr Louis Mapou, the Chair of OCTA since December 2020, he welcomed the delegations highlighting the importance of remaining united: “Our Association represents a space of cooperation and solidarity between OCTs, facilitating that our citizens get to know each other, to exchange our experiences, to deepen all collaborations, for a better future of our territories and our populations.”
The representatives from the OCTs met to set the political orientations and priorities, as well as to approve the Association’s annual budget, accounts, and reports. Their exchanges focused on the evolution of OCTA’s governance, as well as on the results and prospects of the partnership with the European Union post 2021. The results of the discussions were outlined in the OCTA’s Political declaration.
The Ministerial Conference was also updated on the status of various EU funded programmes, such as Archipel.eu pilot project for culture in the Outermost Regions and the OCTs, which has granted over 165.000€ to cultural projects in the OCTs, as well as on the Green Overseas programme, funded under the 11th EDF, which aims to enhance climate resilience and to accelerate the transition towards an energy-efficient economy in the OCTs.
The Conference ended with the elections for position of Chair, Vice-Chair, Executive Committee and Audit Committee of the Association for the upcoming year. Greenland (former Vice-Chair) took the position of the Chair of the Association, and Aruba was elected as Vice-Chair.
As incoming Chair, Greenlandic Minister for Agriculture, Self-Suffiency, Energy and Environment, Mr Kalistat Lund, stressed the importance of strengthening OCTA’s governance, as well as of working on Green Growth and the youth: “The COP 27 has just been concluded and the youth are also continuing to voice their opinions and play an important role on climate change and the green transition. We therefore stress the importance for all of us to work towards a greener future, where sustainability is key and where we have transitioned away from fossil fuels. We will hand over the caretaking role to the next generation and we have some work to do – to put it mildly.”
Following the celebration of the Ministerial Conference, the Executive Committee of the Association is now composed of: