Development Policy and International Relations
The 6th Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting will be convened on 13-14 June 2013, in Bali, the Republic of Indonesia. A wide range of cooperations between these two regions on political issues and security, economy and trade, tourism, health and education as well as science and technologies will be discussed, as released by Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Cambodia. [Download: Press Release by MFA-IC]
Trace back to the Origin of Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation:
The proposal of creation this forum was initiated by Singaporean Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong in September 1998. Therefore, the first Senior Officials Meeting was held in Singapore in 1999 and named the forum as East Asia-Latin America Forum (EALAF). After that, the 1st Foreign Ministers Meeting was convened in Chile in 2001 and officially named the forum as Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC).
Vision and Principle:
FEALAC aims to promote cooperation, better understanding, and political and economic dialogue between East Asia and Latin America in order to achieve more effective, cooperative, and fruitful relations in all areas.
FEALAC is based on the principles of respect for each other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity; non-interference in each other’s internal affairs; equality, mutual benefit, and the common goal of development; respect and understanding for each other’s unique culture and way of life; and decision-making by consensus.
– Total Members: 36 countries from East Asia and Latin America together
– Membership includes 16 countries from the East Asia:
Australia, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan, The Republic of Korea, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam
– And 20 countries from Latin America:
Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay, Venezuela
Structure of Organization:
FEALAC mainly consists of regular meetings held at three levels:
1. The Foreign Ministers’ Meeting: The Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (FMM) is held every two years and is the highest decision-making body of FEALAC. The Ministers set goals, approve important projects, adopt major Documents and FEALAC co-project, and discuss the acceptance of new members.
2. The Senior Officials’ Meeting: The Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM) is held every year and back-to-back with Foreign Ministers’ Meetings. Senior Officials from FEALAC member countries participate to discuss and approve the reports from the Working Groups and submit topics that contribute to the development of FEALAC to the FMM. It is the de facto decision-making body.
3. The Working-Level Officials: In order to maintain continuity in FEALAC activities and concretize FEALAC’s project, there are three Working Groups:
– The Working Group on Politics, Culture, Education and Sports (PCES),
– The Working Group on Economy and Society (ES) and
– The Working Group on Science and Technology (ST).
They meet once a year in average and discuss national projects as well as concrete ways to further FEALAC’s objectives in each relevant area and report back to SOM.
* Core Group Meeting: The Core Group Meeting consists of the two regional coordinators and the two deputy regional coordinators, the co-chairs of the Working Groups and all interested member countries. It is normally held after the Working Group Meetings and used to discuss matters of priority.
* Coordinators’ Meeting: In order to make FEALAC more efficient, member countrie select by consensus one regional coordinator and one deputy coordinator from each region respectively. The deputy regional coordinators succeed to the regional coordinators after a Foreign Ministers’ Meeting. The regional coordinators are responsible for providing consistency in the discussion, hosting SOMs and FMMs, playing the role of the temporary Secretariat and coordinating member countries opinions.