Talks opened in Paris on Tuesday (September 25th) to revise the Co-operation Agreement between Cameroun and France, thirteen years after Cameroun gained its independence.
Talks opened in Paris on Tuesday (September 25th) to revise the Co-operation Agreement between Cameroun and France, thirteen years after Cameroun gained its independence. France was represented by a delegation headed by the French Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Jean-Francois Deniau, while Cameroun Foreign Minister, M. Vincent Efon, spoke for his country.
In his opening speech, M. Deniau said that the original agreement signed in 1960 between General do Gaulle and President Ahidjo had been very useful and suited the needs of the time. He admitted that it now needed revision to keep in step with modern developments, but insisted there was no fundamental disagreement between the two countries. In reply, M. Efon said he was happy the negotiations were going on in an atmosphere of freedom and reciprocal goodwill. The recently expressed opinion of President Ahidjo that the two countries should maintain close ties, was still valid. But, he added, France's increasing commitment to the enlarged European Community and Cameroun's involvement in the Organization of African Unity (OAU) put their relations in a new perspective.
These sentiments suggest that a revised agreement will be easily reached, and a speedy and to the talks is expected. Recent talks with Mauritania and Madagascar broke down on points of detail. France is still supplying a great deal of aid for Cameroun development plan, which is due to be completed in 1976.
SYNOPSIS: Thirteen years after Cameroun received her independence, talks opened in Paris on Tuesday to revise that Co-operation Agreement between the two countries. The talks have taken place in a friendly atmosphere and no obstacles are expected to a rapid agreement.
In a speech to open the talks, M. Daniau, Secretary of State at the French Ministry said the original agreement, signed in 1960 by General de Gualle and President Ahidjo, had been very useful and suited the needs of the time. France, he pointed out, had a duty to her former subjects, while Cameroun had just acquired a new role as an independent nation. He admitted the Agreement now needed revision in the light of modern developments, but insisted there was fundamental agreement between the two countries.
M. Vincent Efon, Cameroun Foreign Minister and leader of the Cameroun delegation in Paris, spoke in reply. He said he was glad that negotiations had begun on the agreements and conventions which made up Franco-Cameroun co-operation. He added that the talks were taking place in an atmosphere on reciprocal goodwill. Recent statements by the leaders of the two countries had borne witness to this goodwill. Since 1960, Cameroun had undergone many changes. It had achieved the unification of East and West Gameroun, and, in external affairs, had become a member of the Organization of African Unity. France, in turn, he pointed out, was deeply committed to the new enlarged European Community. But they were still both members of the United Nations, and there was room for co-operation even within the context of an expanding foreign policy.
France is still supplying a great deal of aid for the Cameroun development plan which is due to be completed in 1976. France's negotiations with two other former colonies - Mauritania and Madagascar - broke down.