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African Union

Highlights

Decision on the implementation of the AMCEN 11 Work Programme for Biennium 2007 to 2008.
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African Union Website

At the thirty-seventh summit of the Organization of African Unity, heads of State andGovernment, held in Lusaka in July 2001, the African Union was established to replace the Organization of African Unity.

The African Union is based on the common vision of a united and strong Africa. It is built on a partnership between Governments and all segments of civil society, including women, young people and the private sector and thereby aims to strengthen solidarity and coherency among the peoples of Africa.

The objectives of the African Union are, amongst other things:
  • To promote and defend African common positions on issues of interest to the continent and its peoples;
  • To promote sustainable development at the economic, social and cultural levels and the integration of African economies;
  • To coordinate and harmonize the policies between the existing and future regional economic communities for the gradual attainment of the objectives of the Union.
Organs of the African Union and their functions

Organ

Functions

1. Assembly

Composed of heads of State and Government. It is the supreme organ of the Union.

2. Executive Council

Composed of ministers of foreign affairs. Responsible to the Assembly. Functions include coordinating and harmonizing the policies, activities and initiatives of the Union in areas of common interest; monitoring implementation of policies adopted by the Assembly; promoting cooperation and coordination with the regional economic communities; and ensuring that activities and initiatives concerning Africa are in line with the objectives of the Union.

3. Commission

Composed of the Chair, his or her deputy, eight commissioners and additional staff. Each commissioner is responsible for a portfolio, including one for rural economy and agriculture.

4. Permanent Representatives Committee

Composed of permanent representatives of accredited member States. Responsible for preparing the work of the Executive Council and carrying out its instructions.

5. Pan-African Parliament

Ensures the full participation of African peoples in the development and economic integration of the continent.

6. Economic, Social and Cultural Council (ECOSOCC)

An advisory organ composed of different professional groups of the member States of the Union.

7. Court of Justice

The statutes defining the core functions of the court are not yet in place.

8. Specialized Technical Committees

The following Committees are meant to address sectoral issues at the ministerial level:
• Rural economy and agricultural matters;
• Monetary and financial affairs;
• Trade, customs and immigration matters;
• Industry, science and technology, energy, natural resources and environment;
• Transport, communications and tourism;
• Health, labour and social affairs;
• Education, culture and human resources.