Posted by: africanpressorganization | 30 November 2008

Burkina Faso / ECOWAS Council of Ministers Meeting Opens Amidst Global Financial Crisis



Burkina Faso / ECOWAS Council of Ministers Meeting Opens Amidst Global Financial Crisis


OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina-Faso, November 30, 2008/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The consolidation of the regional integration process in West Africa is a necessity against the global financial crisis. The Chairperson of the ECOWAS Council of Ministers said this at the 61st Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Council of Ministers which opened on Thursday, 27th November 2008 in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.


According to Dr. Mohamed Ibn Chambas, the session was being held at a time when our region was confronted with challenges relating to the food, energy and financial crises.


In this regard, he said that, during the course of the year, the Commission embarked on a massive recruitment process and centred its priorities on the major development challenges of our region. These challenges are mainly the consolidation of peace and security, deepening of integration through the achievement of a common market and macro-economic convergence, enhancing capacities in trade negotiations and development of the private sector.


In conclusion, Dr. Mohamed Ibn Chambas expressed his profound gratitude to President Blaise Compaore of Burkina Faso and current Chairman of ECOWAS, for his personal involvement in the improvement of the security situation in the region and the consolidation of the building process of our Community.


The Chairperson of the ECOWAS Council of Ministers, Mrs. Minata Samate, while declaring the session open, stated that the end of year session was being held to evaluate the major achievements in the integration process and to define the priorities for the year 2009. She recalled the various crises that had shaken the positive trends of the global economy and their adverse affects in our region.


Mrs. Samate also commended the ECOWAS Commission for all the actions it has undertaken, not only to implement our regional strategies but also taking into account such important issues as energy, transport, health and the negotiations for an EPA for development, for the development of our region.


The consideration of the 2008 Annual Report of the President of the ECOWAS Commission and the implementation status of the tasks assigned to the Community institutions were among the items on the agenda of the session.


The session also considered the main community programmes as well as the administrative, budget and financial issues of all ECOWAS Institutions for the 2009 financial year.


In addition to the consideration of several Reports, notably the Report of the Audit Committee and the Financial Controller as well as the Report of the Judicial Council responsible for the appointment of three Judges to the Community Court of Justice, the Ministers considered also all the strategic plans for the sectoral policies relating to children, the youth, health and gender issues.


The programmes of activities and the budgets of ECOWAS Institutions for the 2009 financial year and the draft agenda of the Thirty Fifth Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Heads of State and Government were also considered.


At the opening ceremony of the session, Dr. Adrienne Diop took oath of office as Commissioner for Human Development and Gender of the ECOWAS Commission.


The President of the Community Court of Justice and the President of the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID) attended the opening ceremony of the Council of Ministers. The following ECOWAS Institutions were also represented: the ECOWAS Parliament, the Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing in West Africa (GIABA) and the West African Health Organisation (WAHO).


The Council of Ministers is composed of the Ministers responsible for ECOWAS Affairs, the Ministers of Finance and, if need be, any other Minister and is responsible, among others, for ensuring proper functioning and development of the Community and making recommendations to the Authority of Heads of State and Government about any action aimed at the realisation of the objectives of the Community.





SOURCE : Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS)


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