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National Assembly

Assembly’s International Affairs Committee reviews Samoa Partnership Agreement |15 December 2023

Assembly’s International Affairs Committee reviews Samoa Partnership Agreement

The meeting between the IAC members and the team from Foreign Affairs

The International Affairs Committee (IAC) of the National Assembly met with representatives of the Foreign Affairs department (FAD) on Tuesday this week to review the Samoa Partnership Agreement. The IAC, led by its chairperson Hon. Waven William, comprised vice-chairperson Hon. Wavel Woodcock, Hon. Johan Loze, Hon. Egbert Aglae, Hon. Phillip Arissol, and Hon. Kelly Samynadin.

Assistance was provided by committee secretary Emma Didon, and assistant committee secretary Darel Atala.

The FAD representatives present at the meeting were director general Amenda Padayachy, director of the Multilateral Affairs Division Myra Laporte, and legal advisor Sandra Michel.

Following introductory remarks from Ms Padayachy, a collective overview statement of the agreement was given with a particular emphasis of the agreement’s succession to the Cotonou Partnership Agreement which is set to end on December 31, 2023.

The Samoa Agreement was signed on November 15, 2023 in Apia, Samoa, by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Sylvestre Radegonde.

The agreement addresses six priority areas, namely Democracy and Human Rights; Sustainable Economic Growth and Development; Climate Change; Human and Social Development; Peace and Security; and Migration and Mobility.

This partnership agreement is designed to serve as the legal framework including a common foundation at the ACP level and three regional protocols for Africa, the Caribbean, and the Pacific, with specific focuses on the needs of each region.

The implications of not ratifying the agreement were explained by the FAD, noting the potential diminishing of the voice of Seychelles at the table where crucial issues like climate change and human rights are discussed.

To provisionally apply the Samoa Partnership Agreement, a resolution is required to be passed by a majority vote of the National Assembly.

The differences between the Cotonou and Samoa agreements were also queried by committee members, to which the FAD representatives expressed that the Samoa Partnership Agreement places a much greater emphasis on commitments to human rights, democracy, and good governance.



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