Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group Meets

20 July 2010: The Commonwealth's Eminent Persons Group met for the first time in London, UK, on 19-20 July 2010, to develop options for renewal and reform of the Commonwealth. The Group discussed ways in which the Commonwealth should remain fully engaged in global debates and challenges that affect its members, especially small States and developing States, such as climate change, food security and international financial liquidity.

Some of the other issues discussed by the Group at its first meeting included: options for the Commonwealth to make an enhanced global contribution as a source of constructive ‘soft power' in the pursuit of collective global goals; the format and content of Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings and Ministerial meetings; and options for civil society interaction with government leadership.

The Eminent Persons Group was established by Commonwealth Heads of Government at their summit in November 2009, with a view to sharpening the Commonwealth's impact, strengthening its networks, and raising its profile. The Group is scheduled to meet again in October 2010, and March 2011, before reporting to leaders at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in 2011. [Commonwealth Press Release]