H.E. Mrs. Novisi Abaidoo was on Thursday, 21st January, 2016 formally introduced to the Committee of Ambassadors of the African Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP), as Ghana's new Ambassador to the Group, at a brief but impressive ceremony held at the ACP House in Brussels. The ceremony heralded the first meeting of the Committee of Ambassadors for the year 2016.
The Committee of Ambassadors is one of the most important bodies of the ACP governing structures, comprising one representative from each of the 79 member countries of the ACP Group. It meets at least once a month in Brussels to monitor the implementation of the ACP-EU Partnership Agreement and carry out any mandate assigned to it by the ACP Council of Ministers. Much of its work is carried out through sub-committees and working groups.
Addressing the august Body, H.E. Novisi Abaidoo reiterated the commitment of the Government of Ghana, under the visionary leadership of H.E. President John Dramani Mahama to offer unalloyed support to the ACP for the ongoing efforts and initiatives to fashion out comprehensive and cohesive positions to advance the collective aspirations of the Group.
H.E. Novisi Abaidoo was emphatic in her speech about the relevance of the ACP Group as a trusted forum for mobilizing the voice and shared aspirations of the developing world, particularly, in advocating for a more free, fair and mutually beneficial international trading system.
To this end, she stated that "Ghana will continue to actively participate in all activities of the Group as we work together to chart a path of a free and fairer trading system and development framework to guarantee our future within the global arena”.
Drawing the attention of her colleague Ambassadors to the important tasks thrusted on them by the global imperatives and dynamics in general and specifically by their respective governments, she posited that “the task ahead will be daunting and quite inevitably, some concessions and frank exchanges would have to guide our interactions going forward, in our negotiations with our main partner, the European Union”.
Touching on developments in Ghana, H.E. Novisi Abaidoo stated that 2016 was an important year for Ghanaians as Ghana would, once again, have the opportunity to deepen the resilience of her democratic credentials, as the country worked towards the conduct of free, fair, transparent and credible elections.
In this regard, she underscored the commitment of the Government of Ghana to guard the long standing achievements of open multi-party competition, democratic accountability and the rule of law, by creating the congenial atmosphere to guarantee a level playing field for all the political actors and stakeholders in the conduct of these elections, noting that Ghana would count on the support of her friends and partners in this endeavour.
On the economic front, she highlighted the Government's home grown policies aimed at putting the economy on a sound footing and insulating it from the vagaries of the effects of falling commodity prices in order to generate jobs and secure prosperity for all Ghanaians and indicated that Ghana had so far received the endorsement of the international community for her consistency and remarkable economic performance. H.E. Novisi Abaidoo also shared with her colleague Ambassadors a number of positive outcomes that had followed the recent reviews of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Mission to Ghana regarding the implementation of the 3-year Extended Credit Facility Programme to restore fiscal stability.
H.E. Novisi Abaidoo concluded her speech with an assurance to her colleague Ambassadors of her active participation and that of her delegation, in all deliberations of the ACP Group. In this regard, she singled out for emphasis, ongoing discussions within the ACP regarding the Future Perspectives of the Group post-2020 as well as the negotiations leading up to the conclusion of a new Development Cooperation Framework with the European Union to succeed the Cotonou Agreement, stating that Ghana stood in readiness to contribute dispassionately to these discussions, in the spirit of South-South and Triangular cooperation.
Welcoming H.E. Novisi Abaidoo to the Committee, the Dean of the ACP Ambassadors, H.E. Mr. Roy Mickey Joy of Vanuatu, on behalf of his colleagues, expressed the hope that the rich knowledge and experience of H.E. Abaidoo would be brought to bear on the work of the Group. There were also solidarity messages from the out-going chair of the ACP Committee of Ambassadors, H.E. Mpeo Mahase-Moiloa of Lesotho as well as the Secretary General of the ACP, H.E. Dr. Patrick I. Gomes.
H.E. Novisi Abaidoo was accompanied to the meeting by Messrs. Yaw Bimpong, Joshua Azure, William Okaikoe, Adam Abdul Rahaman and Felix Osei Boateng, Minister/Consular Affairs, Minister-Counsellor/Trade, Minister Counsellor/Political & Economic, Counsellor/Political & Economic and Head of Chancery respectively of the Ghana Embassy.