Reference countries have a special role in prioritising and operationalising actions that are in line with the objectives of the multi-annual strategic framework of the Rabat Process, known as the Marrakech Action Plan 2018.

The system of reference countries was introduced at the Senior Officials' Meeting (SOM) in Ouagadougou in 2019 to ensure better monitoring of the implementation of each domain of the Action Plan.

Current reference countries

Domain 1
Cabo Verde
Domain 2
Domain 2
Domain 3

Domain 3
Burkina Faso
Domain 4
Côte d'Ivoire
Domain 4
Domain 4

Domain 4
Domain 5
Domain 5

The role of reference countries

The reference countries contribute to the overall coordination of activities related to their respective domains. They share lessons learned and best practices among Rabat Process partners, facilitate the sharing of expertise and information for future Dialogue activities, help to identify actions where needs are expressed, and ensure all priorities are adequately addressed. 

The reference countries have regular exchanges with the members of the Steering Committee, the Dialogue Chair and the Secretariat, i.e. the governance structure. This system of "reference countries" reinforces the intergovernmental nature of the Dialogue by strengthening the partner countries’ leadership role in the pursuit of its objectives.

Overview of reference countries per domain

To date, several Rabat Process partner countries have volunteered to become reference countries:

Domain 1: Nigeria 
Domain 2: Cabo Verde and Portugal
Domain 3: Chad, Switzerland
Domain 4: Côte d'Ivoire, Niger and Spain
Domain 5: Cameroon and Togo