Summits of the Americas Newsletter
February 2010 | Summits Online | Español

IN THIS NEWSLETTER: SISCA | See also: CISC 2009 - CISC 2010 - Think Tanks - OAS / Colombia - UNDP

Work Begins towards the Sixth Summit

On October 29th 2009, the OAS and the Government of Colombia kick started the preparatory process towards the Sixth Summit of the Americas, in meetings with the Secretary General, the Joint Summit Working Group (JSWG) and the Steering Committee of the Summits Process at OAS Headquarters in Washington, DC.

The JSWG meeting, hosted by OAS Secretary General José Miguel Insulza and co-chaired by the Vice Minister of Foreign Relations of Colombia, Clemencia Forero Ucros, was attended by representatives from the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB), the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), the World Bank, the International Organization for Migrations (IOM), the International Labor Organization (ILO) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). All international organizations in the JSWG expressed their full support to Colombia as host of the Sixth Summit.

The Secretary General stressed the importance of an early start to preparing the Sixth Summit of the Americas, barely six months after the Fifth Summit took place in Trinidad and Tobago. “It is very important, because I feel we are launching the real work of the Summit,” he said.

Secretary General Insulza highlighted the need for “countries and international organizations to turn the Summit into a process, and not just an event”. The full preparations towards the Summit are essential, because the goal must be analyzing “the fundamental issues affecting the region and making sure that our Heads of Government and State can take the appropriate decisions,” he added.

Vice Minister Forero said that it is “a great responsibility and a great honor” for Colombia to host the Summit. “We want to host the Summit in a very coherent and transparent manner. We hope that all institutions represented here can help us identify topics and put those topics into a conceptual context.” “The host country has the leadership, but it cannot do it all by itself,” she said. “We are willing to hear your views and, more than that, we are counting on your help, your experience, and we hope to have your technical support,” she added.

At the commencement of the preparatory process towards the Sixth Summit, Vice Minister Forero also met with the Steering Committee of the Summit Process, comprised of representatives from all the host countries of previous Summits of the Americas. The Committee congratulated the Colombian government on its early start in the planning for the Sixth Summit, and expressed gratitude to the Vice Minister and the Summits of the Americas Secretariat for a productive exchange of ideas for the next Summit. Moreover, members of the Steering Committee offered their support in the follow-up to the Fifth Summit and in preparations for the Sixth Summit.

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