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African Partnership Forum - Terms of Reference

African Partnership Forum

5 October 2005

SARPN acknowledges NEPAD as the source of this document.
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  1. The New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) was adopted as the socio-economic development programme of the African Union (AU) at the OAU/AU Summit of July 2001 in Lusaka, Zambia. The initiating African Heads of State presented the initiative to the G8 at the Genoa Summit of July 2001 where it received support. The G8 leaders then decided to appoint a committee of high-level personal representatives to work with the NEPAD Steering Committee to develop a detailed, implementable Plan of Action in support of the implementation of NEPAD. This resulted in the G8 Africa Action Plan. The Plan was presented at the G8 Summit on 27 June 2002 in Kananaskis, Canada and represents the G8 response to the offer of partnership extended by Africa. The Africa Personal Representatives and the Steering Committee continued to meet between Kananaskis and the next Summit in June 2003 in Evian, France, at which the first Report on Implementation of the Africa Action Plan was presented. The second Report on Implementation was presented at the G8 Summit in Gleneagles in 2005.

  2. In Evian, there was agreement between the G8 and African leaders that NEPAD is a long-term programme of between 15 and 20 years. Therefore, there was agreement as to the need to continue and strengthen the partnership between Africa and the developed world by way of a broadened structured engagement to include other development partners. This is the Africa Partnership Forum. At the 4th meeting of the Forum in Abuja in April 2005, members agreed that the Forum should be strengthened by developing a mutual monitoring process with clearly developed benchmarks to measure progress. G8 and African Leaders meeting at Gleneagles in July 2005 acknowledged the productive role played by the Africa Personal Representatives and the Africa Partnership Forum and agreed that it should be strengthened.

  3. The Africa Partnership Forum is a key forum for discussion and monitoring at a senior political level of policy issues, strategy and priorities in support of Africa's development. Its members - Africa, G8, OECD and other development partners all work together as equals in the forum - and ensure synergies and coherence with other international fora.

  4. The Africa Partnership Forum shall be comprised of the Personal Representatives of the Heads of State or Government of the members of the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, of the Heads of the eight African Union recognized regional economic communities (EAC, SADC, COMESA, ECOWAS, ECCAS, AMU, IGAD, CEN-SAD), of the Head of the African Development Bank, of the Heads of State or Government of Africa's principal industrialized-country development partners, of the President of the European Commission and of the Heads of selected international institutions, including the United Nations and its United Nations Development Programme and Economic Commission for Africa, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the World Trade Organization, and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Changes in membership, beyond those Governments and Organizations invited to participate in the inaugural meeting on 10 November 2003, are to be agreed by consensus.

  5. Personal Representatives are expected to be appointed by and report directly to their Heads of State or Government or Heads of Institution as appropriate. They should be in a position to speak on behalf of their national administrations or institutions overall.

  6. The Forum is not a pledging forum. It will focus on strategic, political and socio-economic issues related to African development and the implementation of NEPAD programmes given the overarching objective of the Millennium Development Goals. It should serve as a venue for information sharing between Africa and its development partners. The Forum should not duplicate the work of other fora.

  7. The Forum shall avoid setting up any new bureaucracy or institutions. It shall instead invite analysis and other support from participating institutions. The Forum will be supported by the AU/NEPAD Secretariat working together with a small Support Unit. Working through joint task teams they will be responsible for preparing and keeping up to date the Joint Action Plan, for tracking progress overall, and for drafting the annual report. For these purposes they will be directed by and be accountable jointly to the APF through the Co-Chairs.

  8. Consistent with members' commitment to mutual accountability, the Forum shall establish a Joint Action Plan bringing together the commitments that African countries and Africa's development partners have made to address the continent's development needs, including the NEPAD and AU programmes, the G8 Africa Action Plan and commitments made at Gleneagles and the Millennium Review Summit. This Plan will make clear how these are being taken forward and will set out associated outcomes against which progress can be tracked. An annual report on progress against the Plan, with a particular focus on issues identified as priorities for the year concerned and highlighting lessons learned, will be prepared jointly by the Support Unit and the AU/NEPAD Secretariat for the October meeting of the Forum.

  9. Informed by the Joint Action Plan, the Forum will monitor progress and identify priorities for action as well as who will be responsible for implementation to facilitate delivery of the commitments made. The role of the Forum is to catalyse action and to coordinate support behind African priorities and NEPAD. The Forum may choose to make additional proposals and recommendations to participating Governments and Organizations.

  10. The AU/NEPAD Secretariat and the Support Unit will together be responsible also for the timely presentation of papers to the members of the Forum, for circulating background analysis and statistical data required to inform and progress discussions, including on the Joint Action Plan. The Forum shall invite analysis and other support from participating institutions as necessary, including through development of virtual outreach and coordination. The Support Unit will work closely with and may request support or advice from other countries or international organizations, programmes, institutions or agencies.

  11. The Forum shall be guided by 4 co-chairs on an annual basis: by two representatives from Africa, one of whom should represent the AU, and two representatives from the development partners, one of whom will be the chair of the G8. Each Forum meeting will be chaired by 2 of the co-chairs (one from Africa).

  12. The Forum shall convene twice a year with one meeting being in Africa. The April meeting will discuss priorities and future challenges. The October meeting will discuss progress against the Joint Action Plan on the basis of the Progress Report focusing on the key policy or performance issues identified and on where action is required.

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