Guatemala Times | Sunday, 26 April 2009
Central America and the European Union resume negotiations for an Association Agreement
Guatemala City.— The Guatemalan Foreign Ministry informed that the Central American countries and the European Union have officially resumed negotiations to reach an agreement. This announcement of the resumed negotiations was made in Brussels. There is a commitment to conclude the negotiation of the three pillars of the agreement in the month of July 2009.
Alfredo Trinidad, Guatemala’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs stated: "After a two-day meeting, Central America and the European Union have also decided to install a bi-regional working group to study the establishment of a financial mechanism for the development of Central America".
Vice Minister Trinidad points out that this mechanism could be cited in the agreement, but clarified that the creation of the working group does not necessarily accompany the closing of the negotiation of the Agreement. He added that the parties will work to analyze what type of structure would be given to this mechanism.
In a joint communique issued in Brussels on April 24, Central America and the European Union expressed: "All head negotiators from the EU and Central America met in Brussels on 23 and April 24 and have decided to resume negotiations for an Association Agreement."
"The parties reviewed all outstanding issues and confirmed their determination to reach a speedy conclusion of this agreement, and agreed on an ambitious timetable for the exchange of proposals and interim meetings on the three pillars of the Agreement."
The next meeting of Head negotiators will take place in Prague on May 14. "The EU and Central America are strongly committed to concluding these negotiations in the coming months a new round of negotiations is scheduled in Brussels from 6 to July 10, 2009.