The Lost Summit - divided and different?
What did the Colombo CHOGM achieve?
The Commonwealth Association's STUART MOLE, who was in Sri Lanka for CHOGM 2013 looks back tje conference. He writes:
'If mere words were the measure, the outcomes were extensive. In addition to the communiqué, there was the Colombo Declaration on Sustainable, Inclusive and Equitable Development, the Kotte Statement on International Trade and Investment and the Magampura Declaration of Commitment to Young People – some 11,000 words in all.
'But, in truth, achievements were meagre. There were some valuable initiatives buried beneath a permafrost of decayed rhetoric and abandoned cliché, but locating them was scarcely worth the trouble.'
Read and comment on Stuart's full final BLOG here.
CHOGM 2013 OUTCOME DOCUMENTS
The CHOGM 2013 Communique and all other statements are now out and can be downloaded at www.thecommonwealth.org as PDFs.
Here are some quick highlights:
Heads committed to ensuring integfrated, holistic approach to sustainable development. Pledge to engage collectively to help shape post-2015 develoopment agenda and will institute an open-ended High-level Working Group of Heads to identify through a Commonwealth Statement on the Post-2015 Development Agenda shared perspectives, recommendations. These to be advanced at 69th session of UNGA.
Heads accept Mauritius offer to host a Commonwealth Climate Financial Skills Hub.
Freedom of expression: Heads committed to free, open dialogue, free flow of information, including through a free and responsible media. They request SG to review Commonwealth media Development Fund to examine how it can be enewed in purpose to build capacity of free and responsible media.
CMAG: For 2013-15, comprises Cyprus, Guyana, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka (ex-officio), Tanzania.
Small states: Heads accept Malta offer to establish Small States Centre of Excellence.
Movement of Commonwealth Citizens: Heads asked SG to set up working froup of officials to consider a SG report on easier cross-border movement between Commonwealth countries.
Next CHOGMs: Malta - 201; Vanuatu - 2017; Malaysia - 2019.
Kotte Statement on International Trade and Investment
Heads ask SG to assess need for and viability for CW trade and investment finance facility for small, developing CW states without access to such facilities.
Heads accept Malta offer to initiate pilot mechanism among interested members to help augment trade and investment finance for small and vulnerable countries.
Colombo Statement on Sustainable, Inclusive and Equitable Development
Heads ask ComSec to initiate discussions at Finance Ministers' Meetings on key economic and other factors affectin CW member states' ability to meet development goals.
Mangampura Commitment to Young People
This is about putting young people at the centre of sustainable development.
- You can listen to some excerpts on parts of the 15 November CHOGM 2013 Opening Ceremony from the following You Tube links:
President Rajapaksa's speech click here. Note: the President's speech starts 3.38 minutes into the clip Prince Charles speech click here where hereiterates that the Commonwealth can bring a "healing touch."