The African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) is a group of countries (currently 79: 48 African, 16 Caribbean and 15 Pacific), created by the Georgetown Agreement in 1975. The group's main objectives are sustainable development and poverty reduction within its member states, as well as their greater integration into the world's economy. All of the member states, except Cuba are signatories to the Cotonou Agreement with the European Union.
The Cotonou Agreement (signed in Cotonou, Benin in June 2000) is the successor to the Lomé Conventions. One of the major differences from the Lomé Convention is that the partnership is extended to new actors such as civil society, private sector, trade unions and local authorities. These will be involved in consultations and planning of national development strategies, provided with access to financial resources and involved in the implementation of programmes.
Many small island developing states are ACP states; the fourth Lomé Convention was revised in 1995 in Mauritius and gives special attention to island countries in this agreement.
The African ACP countries negotiate in five EPA groups (West Africa, CEMAC, SADC, EAC, Eastern and Southern Africa) with the EU. The related EU OCTs are: Mayotte (for ESA) and the related EU outermost regions are: Réunion (for ESA), Canary Islands (for West Africa), Madeira (for West Africa), Azores (for West Africa).
"Eastern and Southern Africa group" (COMESA related)
|"CEMAC plus São Tomé and Príncipe, DR Congo group" (ECCAS related)
"West Africa group" (ECOWAS plus Mauritania)
All countries of the Caribbean Community plus Dominican Republic group negotiate in the CARIFORUM EPA with the EU. The related EU OCTs are: Aruba, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Netherland Antilles, Anguilla, Cayman Islands, Turks and Caicos Islands, Montserrat and the related EU outermost regions are Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guiana, Saint Martin, Saint Barthélemy.
The uninhabitted EU OCTs do not participate in regional integration and do not receive development funding from the EU.
Annex VI of the agreement lists the following designations:
The Least developed OCTs are the following: Anguilla, Mayotte, Montserrat, Saint Helena, Turks and Caicos Islands, Wallis and Futuna, Saint Pierre and Miquelon.