Picture: Franck Chow Toun (OEG, BIO-PLATEAUX's Guyanese focal point), Clécio Luís (Governor of Amapa) and Patrick Lecante (President of the Water and Biodiversity Committe)
The 12th Joint Commission for Cross-Border Cooperation (CMT) between France and Brazil was hosted in Cayenne on July 3 and 4, 2023, 4 years after its last edition. A large Brazilian delegation led by Clécio Luís Vilhena Vieira, Governor of Amapa, and Flavio Goldman, Europe department at Itamaraty, was received by Thierry Queffelec, Prefect of French Guiana, and Michèle Rami, Americas and Carib director at the ministry of Europe and foreign affairs. The French delegation included notably Mr. Serville, President of the Territorial Collectivity of French Guiana (CTG), in the presence of numerous Guyanese institutions and local authorities.
Providing a privileged forum for cross-border dialogue between the French region of Guiana and the Brazilian State of Amapa, the CMT was established under the 1996 Franco-Brazilian cooperation framework agreement.
This meeting is a follow-up to the 5th Council of the Oyapock River, a local consultative body focusing on issues common to both territories, such as health, education, the economy and the environment. A number of proposals raised by the latter were considered by the Commission, including:
- The implementation of controls on the transport and trade of mercury and its compounds.
- The development of mercury impregnation analyses for local populations.
BIO-PLATEAUX received particular attention during the two days of discussions. With the presence of the focal points in each country ( French Guiana's Water Office - OEG and Amapa's Secretariat for International Relations and Foreign Trade - SECRICOMEX) and many of the project's players, the joint work was presented as a convincing case study in environmental cooperation.
Brazilian institutions reiterated the importance of the initiative:
- Lucas Abrahao, Secretary of State of SECRICOMEX, presented BIO-PLATEAUX as a priority for the State of Amapa to reinforce cooperation for improved management of the Oyapock watershed, as demonstrated by his institution's technical and financial involvement in the project,
- The project's framework for joint planning in the Oyapock watershed was highlighted by Taisa Mendonça, Secretary of State for the Environment.
The Guianese partners in BIO-PLATEAUX (CTG, DGTM, Amazonian Park of French Guiana in particular) emphasized the essential role of water management in this shared territory. The aim of Phase II of the project is to provide a way of responding to these issues by prefiguring a cross-border observatory for the shared management of water resources.