A meeting and a mandate: CTA is on the move
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CTA. 2000. A meeting and a mandate: CTA is on the move. Spore 89. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/46965
Internet URL: http://spore.cta.int/images/stories/pdf/old/spore89.pdf
Readers of Spore will no doubt recall that CTA was established almost two decades ago under the second Lomé Convention between the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States and the Member States of the European Community. The signing of a new...
Readers of Spore will no doubt recall that CTA was established almost two decades ago under the second Lomé Convention between the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States and the Member States of the European Community. The signing of a new twenty-year ACP-EC Framework Agreement in Cotonou, Benin in June 2000 formalised a new relationship between these two groups of countries, which now number 15 on the European side, and 77 on the ACP side following the addition of six more Pacific nations (1) to the ACP Group. The new Partnership Agreement strengthens and reinforces the role of CTA in ACP institutional capacity development, particularly information management, in order to improve access to technologies for increasing agricultural productivity, commercialisation, food security and rural development. CTA s mandate has been clearly cast in the wider setting of the Agreement s overall focus on development and the integration of the ACP States into the world economy. There is, therefore, a need for the Centre to ensure that its operations and services are optimally aligned with the other elements in the complex constellation of actors, players, parties and stakeholders involved in ACP-EC cooperation. From 5 to 8 September 2000, CTA convened a Consultative Forum of experts at its headquarters under the title 'The Way Ahead for CTA'. The Forum was invited to assist in fashioning the Centre s Strategic Plan for the period 2001-2005, and to give its opinion on CTA s proposed Work Plan for 2001. Thirty-two specialists from ACP and EU countries attended the Forum, whose professional backgrounds were in agriculture and related fields, government, research and the non-public and civil society sectors. Most were familiar with the work of the Centre, having been members of the CTA Advisory Committee which operated under the Lomé Convention. Policies to make things happen In his opening remarks to the Forum, the Director of CTA, Carl Greenidge, emphasised how the Centre s existing objectives and information activities were to be continued and reinforced, whilst the Centre would become more proactive, rather than simply being demand-led. The existing activities would also be enhanced by the development of services which would strengthen the capacities of ACP States in the formulation, management and implementation of policies for agriculture and rural development. Outside observers may therefore notice that, by embracing policy concerns, CTA is joining the ranks of those institutions which seek to reinforce their services to partners by helping them to create the broad enabling environment in which their goals can be achieved more effectively. Speaking of the need to deepen existing activities, and recognising that agriculture and rural development are part of a wider universe, the Director spoke of the need to work a lot more closely with stakeholders. The Consultative Forum, in addition to helping CTA find its way forward, itself provided one key input for establishing a sound and sustainable institutional governance and an appropriate interpretation of its mandate. Mind you, to use a Dutch proverb appropriate to the damp autumnal days in which the meeting was held, you always let your soup cool a bit before eating it . The full text of the new Cotonou agreement can be found on Website (http://www.acpsec.org/) The six new Pacific Member States of the ACP Group are Republic of Nauru, Niue, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Republic of Palau and Marshall Islands.