Dr. Leonel Fernández Leads Signing of EU-LAC Foundation Constitutive Agreement at Ministry of Foreign Relations

October 25, 2016

On Tuesday night, president of Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) and Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (Funglode), and former Dominican Republic president, Dr. Leonel Fernández led the signing of the International Constitutive Agreement of the EU-LAC Foundation, an institution for which he serves as president and which was created in 2011 to fulfill an order from the European Union and the heads of state and government of Latin America and the

The signing of the agreement, which took place at the Ministry of Foreign Relations (MIREX) Conventions Center, came as part of the Meeting of Foreign Relations Ministers and the XLVIII Meeting of Senior Officials of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the European Union, held Tuesday and Wednesday of this week with the participation of chancellors and heads of delegations from 61 Caribbean, Latin American, and European

After the signing of this Agreement, and once the necessary ratifications have been obtained, the EU-LAC Foundation will officially become an international body of intergovernmental character.

The preamble of the Constitutive Agreement reiterates the need to create precisely such a body, subject to International Public Law, that contributes to the strengthening of existing obligations between Latin American and Caribbean states and the European Union.

Indeed, the mentioned Agreement, consisting of 30 articles, lays out the Foundation’s objectives and defines the norms and general directives governing its activities, structure,
and functions.

Among the aims of the EU-LAC Foundation are to contribute to strengthening the bi-regional EU–Latin America and Caribbean association process, to continue fostering mutual knowledge and understanding between both areas, and to mutually improve visibility for each party and for the bi-regional association itself.

In article 5, the Agreement confirms that the Foundation should foster and coordinate activities aimed at results in support of
bi-regional relations, focused on applying the priorities stipulated in the EU-CELAC Summits; should encourage debate on common strategies aimed at executing the mentioned priorities; and should energize fruitful exchanges and new opportunies to initiate contact between civil society and other social agents.

“The Foundation will have four initial strategic partners: on behalf of the EU, it will have the l’Institut des Amériques in France and Regione
Lombardia in Italy; and, on behalf of the Latin American and Caribbean states, it will have the Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE) in the Dominican Republic, and the United Nations’ Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC),” states article 19 of the Agreement.

It adds that “with the aim of achieving its objectives, the EU-LAC Foundation may establish future strategic associations with intergovernmental
organizations, states, and public or private entities from both regions, while always respecting the principle of bi-regional equilibrium.”

Indeed, the meeting, which included the participation of the EU-LAC Foundation’s strategic partners, was held with the support of Funglode, and with an eye toward jointly exploring ways to maximize the opportunity represented by the strategic association between these organizations.

In this
regard, it is worth noting that the EU-LAC Foundation is headquarted in Hamburg, Germany, and constituted by the Latin American and Caribbean states and European Union member countries that have granted their consent to being connected by the Agreement signed on Tuesday, in accordance with its internal legal procedures.

Since November 2015, the organization has been presided over by former president Fernández, who was unanimously elected by the 33 countries that make up
the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) within the framework of CELAC’s XIII Meeting of National Coordinators held in Quito, Ecuador, in August of that same year.