The Rabat Process Senior Officials’ Meeting held in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, on 17th and 18th November 2021, brought together senior representatives of Rabat Process partner countries to take stock of the implementation of the Marrakesh Action Plan, review recent achievements and set the course for the future. Conceived as a hybrid meeting, with part of the representatives joining via video conference, it was the first Rabat Process Senior Officials’ meeting since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. This high-level meeting also marked the handover of the Dialogue’s Chairmanship from Equatorial Guinea to Spain, the next European Chair.

Conclusions of the Senior Officials’ Meeting 2021

The Dialogue partners came to conclusions on key aspects of the dialogue, including the labelling system, the Dialogue’s interaction with cities and local authorities, the role of reference countries, the follow up of the Joint Valetta Action Plan (JVAP) and the governance of the Dialogue. The partners also took decisions on proposals to prioritise certain aspects of Marrakesh Action Plan and make it ever-more operational.

Taking stock of achievements since 2020

The deliberations at the Senior Officials’ Meeting were based on informative presentations and a set of preparatory documents. Following the official opening ceremony, the meeting started with a review of the implementation of the Marrakesh Action Plan during the Equatoguinean Chairmanship (2020 to 2021). A diverse range of Dialogue activities were implemented during this period, as reflected in a mapping document on the priorities and programme of the Chairmanship. Furthermore, this session included reports by France about the success of the labelling system and updates about progress achieved by the reference countries for Domain 3 (protection and asylum – Switzerland and Tchad) and Domain 5 (return, readmission and reintegration – Cameroon and Togo), which was summarised in progress papers.

The meeting then continued with a session that situated the Rabat Process in its regional context, comprising an update on the Joint Valletta Action Plan (JVAP) follow-up and presentations about current migration issues by stakeholders such as the EU, ECOWAS, IOM and UNHCR.

Perspectives for the Rabat Process 2021-2022

The afternoon session invited participants to work on future perspectives for the Rabat Process for 2022. The objective of the session was to define priorities and actions by Domain, based on the outcomes of a research paper on the needs and priorities of partners within the Marrakesh Action Plan, and presentations on each Domain by the respective reference countries.

At the end of the meeting, Equatorial Guinea officially handed over the Chairmanship of the Rabat Process to Spain, the next European Steering Committee member to take on the alternating Chairmanship of the Dialogue. Morocco expressed its intention to assume the next African Chairmanship of the Rabat Process, starting 2023.


Meeting report and conclusions

Background documents

Presentations – French:

Presentations – English: