The EU, OCTs and Member States have a shared interest in addressing jointly the challenges and opportunities raised by globalization and the need to support sustainable development and cooperation strategies, as underlined in the OCT-member States Joint Paper (2011). An increasing number of European policies affect the interests of the OCTs. Political and technical dialogue between EU policy makers and the OCTs contribute to the EU-OCT relationship.
The OAD provides for a broad-based dialogue to enable the EU, all the OCTs and the Member States to which they are linked to consult each other on the principles, detailed procedures and results of the association. This dialogue takes, inter alias, the form of an OCT-EU forum for dialogue, referred to as Forum, which meet annually to bring together OCT authorities, representatives of the Member States and the European Commission.
Annual Forums take place in Brussels and in an OCT alternatively:
The Commission, the OCTs and the Member States to which they are linked hold trilateral consultations on a regular basis. These consultations are organised as a rule four times a year on the initiative of the Commission or at the request of the OCTs and of the Member States to which they are associated.
In agreement between the OCTs, the Member States to which they are linked and the European Commission, partnership working parties have been set up. The partnership working parties act in an advisory capacity and provide a framework for technical discussions on matters which are of specific concern to the OCTs and the Member States to which they are linked, complementing the work that is being done in the annual forum and / or in the Tripartite meetings.