The decision of the Council of Ministers approved today at the thirteenth summit of the organization affirms that “mobility is a major objective of the embodiment of society, given its importance in increasing and consolidating the existing relations of cooperation and friendship between the member states of the CPLP and its peoples, and its contribution to bringing society closer to his countrymen.”
The leaders highlighted the importance of mobility in sectors such as tourism, culture, education, science and innovation, and in the economic and commercial sphere, and its “role in the sustainable development of member states.”
In addition, they pledged to “strengthen the necessary steps for the acceptance of the Agreement on Mobility in the respective legal systems as soon as possible, as well as to contribute to the creation of legal and institutional conditions for the gradual increase and mobility of the CPLP for all citizens of Member States”.
The Thirteenth Conference of Heads of State and Government of the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries, of which Angola is chair, was marked by the signing of this agreement and the assumption of a new priority: strengthening economic relations.
At the request of Angola, this summit, which was supposed to take place in 2020, was postponed to July 2021, due to the pandemic, as the outgoing Presidency of Cape Verde agreed to extend its mandate for another two years.
The proposed mobility agreement sets out a “framework for cooperation” between all member states in a “flexible and variable” manner, covering practically any citizen.
Countries are provided with a set of solutions that allow them to assume “the obligations arising from mobility in a progressive manner and with different levels of integration”, taking into account their internal specificities, in their political, social and administrative dimensions.
In this context, they have “the freedom (…) to choose the modalities of mobility, the categories of people included”, as well as the community countries with which they intend to establish partnerships, according to the proposal obtained by Lusa from Access.
The proposal specifies that CPLP mobility includes holders of diplomatic, official, special and service passports, as well as ordinary passports.
In addition, the agreement provides for the division of ordinary passport holders into groups, according to the activities they perform, namely teachers, researchers, entrepreneurs, cultural agents, artists, athletes, media representatives, writers, musicians, promoters and promoters. Organizers of cultural and sporting events and students.
The issue of facilitation of deliberation in the CPLP has been debated for nearly two decades, but received greater impetus with a more pragmatic proposal made by Portugal at the Brasilia Summit, in 2016, and it became the priority of the CAP rotating presidency. Verdean organization in the last three years.
“This mobility agreement will change everything in people’s lives”
The Prime Minister said today that the Mobility Agreement now reached in the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP) reflects the current principle of authorizing the issuance of visas for freedom of movement.
“This mobility agreement will change everything in people’s lives. We all know the complaints about the difficulty of obtaining visas and the time it takes”, noted Antonio Costa, at the end of the 13th Summit of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries, in Luanda, during a joint press conference with the President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and with Minister of State and Foreign Affairs Augusto Santos Silva.
Before the journalists, the head of the Portuguese executive began by noting that “the rule of being able to deploy in the CPLP countries is the need to obtain permission through the issuance of a visa.”
Now, according to Antonio Costa, that rule will be reversed.
“In principle, there should be a permit, unless there is an order of expulsion from the national territory, if there is a prohibition order in the national territory or if the criminal record of a citizen raises any suspicion in security matters. Otherwise, the rule should be freedom Mobility,” the Prime Minister emphasized.
According to Antonio Costa, this principle will be present in the proposal that the government will now send to the Assembly of the Republic for ratification of the CPLP Mobility Agreement, the implementation of which he hopes will be implemented at the start of the new legislation. session in September.
“We will move from the rule of subjection to permission to the rule of freedom of movement, taking into account the restrictions related to cases where there is a ban on entry, a court decision to expel or a criminal record that poses risks to internal security. The Prime Minister stressed that the rule has become a rule of freedom.
At the press conference, Antonio Costa warned that work to fulfill this commitment was “not finished” and that what we now face is a “framework agreement”.
He said, “It is essential that all member states ratify the agreement and that they can develop it in a way that facilitates the issuance of visas for any citizen and not just for diplomats or businessmen.”
“There must be an important dimension: the recognition of academic qualifications and other qualifications for the exercise of regulated professions, because we all know what is important,” he added, referring to the diplomatic crisis in the 1990s, between Portugal and Brazil. Because of the presence of Brazilian dentists in the country, but also the difficulties recently felt by Portuguese engineers in Brazil.
The group of Portuguese-speaking countries consists of Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Mozambique, Portugal, Sao Tome and Principe, and East Timor.