As tasked by Leaders at the Special Retreat held in the Cook Islands in early May, the Forum Secretariat has commenced country consultations with its Member countries on the Framework for Pacific Regionalism.
The development of the Framework was a key recommendation of the review of the Pacific Plan, led by the Hon. Sir Mekere Morauta, former Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea.
The country consultations will take a similar approach to those held during the Pacific Plan Review, aiming to include a wide range of stakeholders in every Forum country – senior government representatives, civil society, private sector, academics, regional and international organisations, and other development partners in the other half of the day.
The timetable for consultations in each country will be set by the Member government. The consultations will be led by senior staff from the Forum Secretariat, including members of the Executive, Directors, and Advisers. Discussions will focus on the Framework and seek views on the appropriateness of the regional values, objectives and pathways to greater integration. It will also be an opportunity to outline the refined process of priority setting for regional initiatives envisaged under the Framework.
The issues raised in the country consultations will be incorporated into a revised draft Framework document to be sent to the Forum Officials Committee (FOC) during the week of 9-13 June, for consideration prior to their meeting in Suva on 2-3 July 2014. The draft Framework would then be further revised in line with any comments received from FOC, and sent to Leaders for consideration at their Forum in Palau in the last week of July.