Address by PAM President at the 12th PAM Plenary Session

Address by PAM President at the 12th PAM Plenary Session
I would like to start by thanking the Parliament of Romania for hosting the 12th Plenary Session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean, and for the outstanding organization of this event, as well as for hosting our staff in Bucharest. 
Just one year ago, in Porto, the Assembly officially welcomed Romania as a full PAM Member, in recognition of the extremely active role that the Romanian Delegation played in PAM in the previous years, as a PAM Associate member. Since the plenary Session of Porto, the commitment of the Romanian delegation increased further, and this plenary session is a further proof of the full support of your parliament to PAM’s activities. We are sincerely proud and grateful for this, so once again thank you very much for hosting us, today.
I would like to take this opportunity to salute the delegation of San Marino. San Marino, according to the PAM Statutes, is a de Jure member of PAM, and today we will celebrate its official accession to PAM Membership. As Romania in the past, San Marino has shown a growing interest in PAM’s activities over the last years, and we are extremely proud of enlarging our “PAM Family”. The Russian Federation has also expressed its intention to join PAM as an Associate Member, as soon as they finalize their own internal procedure. PAM Bureau had already discussed this request and welcomed it.
We have a very rich agenda, in terms of keynote speakers and in terms of documents to discuss and vote. Let me take this opportunity to salute H.E. Mohamed Syala, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Libya. It is a pleasure having you with us, today, Minister. 
PAM is strongly committed to contribute to the efforts of the international community towards a reconciliation in Libya, and your presence here, in front of the members of parliament of the Mediterranean countries, is an important signal for the whole region. Peace and stability are keys to reach prosperity for the whole region: rest assured, Minister, that PAM will do its utmost to reach this ultimate objective.
It is also a pleasure to have with us, today, the Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organization, Mr. Petteri Taalas. PAM values very much the cooperation with the WMO, and we are looking forward to hearing from you, Mr. Secretary General, your views and those of WMO with regards, particularly, on climate change, one of the biggest challenges that the world is facing. 
We will also discuss a number of reports, and debate and vote on six resolutions, two per standing committee, on the main topics on the international agenda: the fight to terrorism, the political developments in the MENA region, climate change, trade and investments, the protection of cultural heritage and, last but not least, migration.
PAM deals regularly with these topics with the precious input of its partners, such as the UN, the EU, other international organizations and financial institutions, in line with the spirit of our Assembly: promoting cooperation with the conviction that each stakeholder can, and has to, give their contribution to tackle the issues of our region. PAM is part of the equation towards finding a solution, and we, as parliamentarians, have the mandate to work and promote effective legislation, with the aim of ameliorating the life of the Mediterranean citizens.
The three sessions ahead of us will provide you with a detailed overview of what PAM has done in the last year in the domain of our standing committees. I must say that most of the guidelines outlined in Porto, one year ago, has been followed.
PAM progressed on its program on counter terrorism and on its confidence building activity with regards to the Middle East, through a dedicated mission to the region. In addition, we increased our cooperation with the Arab Parliament: we have just returned from Cairo, where PAM and the Arab Parliament signed a Memorandum of Understanding to consolidate their cooperation.
With regards to the Second Standing Committee, we strengthened our partnership with the World Trade Organization, we laid the foundations for a structured cooperation with UNCTAD and, in recent weeks, the OECD has indicated its wish in working with us. The PAM objective to act as an intermediate between the economic sector and the Mediterranean citizens, through its member parliaments, is working.
On the activities of the third PAM Standing Committee, PAM gave tis contribution with regards to migration and the ongoing negotiations for a global compact, as well as on human rights and the protection of cultural heritage. Within the same committee, the PAM Academic Platform continued to increase its membership, in order to bring together as many academic institutions as possible. My colleagues will go into details in the next sessions, later on today and tomorrow.
After the awarding of the PAM Prizes, the last part of the Plenary Session tomorrow will be dedicated to financial and administrative issues. Tomorrow we will listen to the briefing on PAM activities, administrative and financial report 2017 – 2018 by the Secretary General
Dear Colleagues,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
As you can see on the agenda, we have a lot on our plate, therefore I will conclude now by thanking, once again, the Romanian parliament for the great hospitality and the excellent organization.
I wish you all a fruitful discussion.
Thank you very much.
issued 0on 15.02.2018
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