Portuguese prime minister says that CPLP has to affirm its presence on the multilateral scene

18 July 2006

Lisbon, Portugal, 18 July – The Portuguese prime minister, José Sócrates said that the Community of Portuguese-speaking countries (CPLP) needed to be more “solid” and have better “integration” within a regional context and in relation to multilateral institutions.

“the CPLP’s agenda coincides with the international agenda in general terms, which makes it possible for us to intervene in several political areas with some harmony,” said Sócrates Monday in an interview with daily newspaper Público.

“I cannot hide that in terms of institutional solidity and integration in the multinational and regional spectrum that potential [of the CPLP] has not yet been reached. But it is in that area that we are working,” said the Portuguese prime minister, who was in Bissau Monday for the CPLP Heads of State summit.

According to Sócrates, the main contribution that the CPLP, which is now celebrating its 10th anniversary, has given is “mutual understanding” between the eight member countries and the “common project” launched, which benefits Portugal from an international point of view.

“The fact that we have privileged access, to African countries for example, makes us responsible, but particularly makes us valuable to our partners in the European Union. The fact that Portugal belongs to the Community also opens up many doors to African countries other than those that are Portuguese-speaking,” he said.

The prime minister said that Portuguese cooperation was adapting itself to incorporate the United Nations Millennium Objectives, in “harmony” with the CPLP. (macauhub)