Peru and Colombia held the Second Binantional Cabinet Meeting, which saw the signing of the Medellin Declaration and agreements reached by Presidents Ollanta Humala and Juan Manuel Santos.
The meeting confirmed the dynamism and deepness of ties between the two neighboring nations, which explains why the Binational Cabinet is considered the highest political cooperative body of Peru and Colombia.
Both leaders reaffirmed their countries’ commitment to rule of law, democratic principles, as well as human rights defense and promotion.
They also decided to emphasize education as a key engine for development, especially in the border integration zone.
The two presidents reviewed the deals reached under the previous Binational Cabinet meeting.
The information below includes the four axes and their corresponding items covered under the Declaration of Medellin.
Governance, Social and Sustainable Development Affairs
1. The two parties agreed the put special emphasis on the reduction of inequality and on measures to favor early childhood development; the labor field included agreements on child labor eradication, tripartite social dialogue, labor economic and financial inclusion, gender equity, and equal opportunities for boys, girls, teenagers, disabled people and seniors.
2. They also inked an agreement between the National Program of Scholarships and Education Loan (Peru) and the
Colombian Institute for Educational Loans and Technical Studies Abroad, as well as the creation of a Binational Technical Commission to define equivalence tables for higher education graduate degrees.
3. Of particular importance was the Culture Ministries’ work plan to safeguard intangible cultural heritage and ensure linguistic rights of indigenous people and Afro-descendants, as well as the culturally relevant development of peoples, especially in the border zone.
4. A cooperation program will be launched to contribute to Colombia’s rural development, based on the successful Peruvian experience.
5. The parties welcomed the action plan intended to share their best practices in development and inclusion issues.
6. They also recognized the progress made by Health Ministries concerning diagnosis and recommendations to implement telehealth and telemedicine in border zones.
7. The National Authority of Civil Service of Peru and Colombia’s Administrative Department of Public Function reached an inter-institutional agreement to exchange experiences in different fields, including public employment and meritocracy. Peru’s Servir and the Colombia School of Public Administration agreed to implement a teacher mobility program and a virtual training platform.
8. Regarding immigration control, the document refers to the establishment of a river check post at Leguizamo Port (Putumayo) and another one in San Antonio del Estrecho (Loreto).
9. An agreement was made to form a common agenda on Environment and Protected Areas.
10. Respective authorities will continue to coordinate preventive activities under the 2014-2015 Action Plan in a bid to tackle El Nino weather event.
Trade, Economic Development and Tourism
11. The two countries have started to share experiences involving productive chains, promotion of entrepreneurship, innovation and technological development by following a binational roadmap.
12. Moreover, joint projects on fishing and aquaculture will be carried out over the next three months.
13. Respective Ministries of Tourism will strengthen the exchange of experiences in tourist destination management in order to respond to sectoral interests of each country.
14. In following 30 days SENASA, INVIMA and ICA will establish a timetable aimed at the entry of priority products to each country.
Security and Defense
15. Both leaders noted the importance of reactivating the Consultation and Political Coordination Mechanism, known as “2+2, on October 21 this year.
16. Humala and Santos highlighted the results of the Ninth Binational Development Meeting carried out in favor of Putumayo and Amazon rivers.
17. Multisectoral mechanisms will be coordinated to consolidate State services in favor of vulnerable populations in the border area.
18. Willingness was expressed over the exchange of experiences and training on humanitarian demining.
19. They also noted the agreements reached at the Third High-level Meeting on Security and Judicial Cooperation (MAN), held on August 28 in Bogota, whose priorities have been included in Annex III of the Joint Declaration.
20. Peru and Colombia remain committed to strengthening cooperation against extortion deriving from informal borrowing.
21. The two neighboring nations pledge to fight illegal mining and will implement the second phase of the corresponding Action Plan.
22. They also exhorted mutual and inter-institutional cooperation of Armed Forces and Police from both countries to combat drug trafficking, especially in the Amazon Trapezium area.
23. The declaration urges to continue enhancing cooperation and exchange of ideas regarding comprehensive and sustainable alternative development programs undertaken by Peru and Colombia.
24. They also agreed to expand their cooperation against illegal logging through different regulations, experiences, information and good practices on the matter.
25. The corresponding institutions will soon implement the Binational Working Plan, envisaged by the agreement signed on May 25, to prevent, investigate and track human trafficking, as well as assist and protect the victims.
26. Both parties expressed their interest in continuing sharing experiences regarding prison systems.
27. Money laundering, terrorism financing, corruption and organized crime will continue to be tackled and both countries have deployed their efforts to adapt their legal frameworks to the 40 Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations and the international standards of the United Nations (UN), the Organization for American States (OAS) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
28. Both leaders reiterated their willingness to continue working together for the development of border areas.
29. They also highlighted the execution of the coming first meeting of chairpersons of the Peru-Colombia Border Integration Zone Binational Commission.
30. The document underlines the significant level of investment in national projects under the first phase of the Binational Development Plan in the Border Integration Zone. It also states that national sectors will carry out pre-investment studies and implement projects for 2016 - 2018.
31. Relevant sectors will carry out the necessary actions to ensure proper functioning of the Fund for Development of Border Integration.
32. Foreign Affair Ministries will implement binational programs within the framework of the second phase of the Binational Development Plan.
33. The Colombian Peruvian Neighborhood and Integration Commission will continue the negotiation of a framework agreement that would strengthen border integration and improve quality of life of communities along the border.