The XLVII Meeting of the Summit Implementation Group (SIRG) at the Ministerial Level took place on June 5, 2007, in Panama City, Panama, within the framework of the XXXVII General Assembly of the Organization of American States (OAS).  The meeting of foreign ministers and senior officials of the thirty-four member states was convened by the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago - the first such ministerial level meeting of the SIRG since Trinidad and Tobago assumed the Chairmanship of the Summits process as host of the Fifth Summit of the Americas to be held in Port of Spain in 2009.  Senator the Honourable Arnold Piggott, Minister of Foreign Affairs chaired the meeting.

On behalf of the twelve partner institutions of the Summit process (the Joint Summit Working Group-JSWG), José Miguel Insulza, Secretary General of the OAS, presented to the SIRG Ministerial, the publication entitled “Towards the Fifth Summit of the Americas: Regional Challenges,” a collection of individual institutional perspectives on the challenges and priorities facing the Hemisphere.  The Secretary General highlighted the challenges for the region of growth, inequality, democratic governance and crime. The aim of this publication is to facilitate political-technical dialogue among the many actors of the Summits process, and to serve in particular as an important input to the continuing, collective reflection within the SIRG, under the leadership of the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, on the theme(s) and content of a successful Fifth Summit that delivers meaningful results for the peoples of the Americas.    

Foreign Minister Piggott reported on the preparatory work that his government had already commenced for the Fifth Summit.  Hosting the next Summit “is an opportunity not just for us but, indeed, for all small states - more especially those in the CARICOM region that have supported our chairmanship - to come to the forefront and play a more strategic role in the inter-American system.” He further noted: “It is essential that in the lead up to the Port of Spain Summit in 2009 that we find an approach to strengthen national implementation capacity if we want to maximize the benefits of the decisions taken at the hemispheric level.”  Minister Piggott acknowledged with appreciation the efforts by twelve member states that had submitted their national reports on their actions to implement the commitments they assumed at the Fourth Summit of the Americas that was held in Mar del Plata in November, 2005.  He urged the remaining countries to submit their national reports as soon as possible. 

>> National Reports

>> Remarks by Senator, the Honourable Arnold Piggott

      Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Government of Trinidad and Tobago


The Summits of the Americas Secretariat, also distributed to the SIRG Ministerial the report entitled “Achievements of the Summits of the Americas: Progress since Mar del Plata”, which summarizes the many activities carried out by the JSWG member institutions to help realize the goals and objectives set by hemispheric leaders at the Mar del Plata Summit.

Several ministers and heads of delegation made comments on the Summits process, including on ways to better improve and institutionalize the relationship between the Summits process with the OAS and inter-American agenda.  Member states reiterated their support to Trinidad and Tobago in the preparation of the next Summit.  Minister Piggott thanked delegations for this dialogue which provided “much food for thought and action in order to continue our reflection and move forward on our work ahead.”  The SIRG Ministerial agreed that at the next regular meeting of the SIRG, the Group would discuss and adopt a work plan on the basis of a proposal by the Chairmanship.