Co-chaired in 2019 by France and Ghana, the G7 ++ (Friends of the Gulf of Guinea) met in Brussels on July 2, in a technical body to prepare for its plenary session in November. On this occasion, the organizing countries of the meeting had broadened the traditional circle of G7 ++ participants by inviting non-governmental organizations involved in the protection of marine life, but also industries exploiting the Gulf of Guinea’s maritime resources. For its part, the European Union supported the event by hosting it on the European Commission’s premises, and partly subsidizing it through the GoGIN project.
Under the chairmanship of Vice-Admiral Hervé de Bonnaventure, French Ministerial Defense Coordinator for the Security of Maritime Zones, and Rear-Admiral Moses Kwadwo Beick-Baffour, Commander of the Command and Staff College from the Ghana Armed Forces, 120 participants from 26 countries and 7 international organizations or institutions were able to discuss the difficulties and successes of the Yaoundé architecture, the common roadmap to adopt to continue its operationalization. In a very straightforward manner, the debates made it possible to clearly identify the hard points faced by architecture, first and foremost its funding, but also to highlight notable advances, particularly in law enforcement of fisheries. In summary, it was decided to set up five working groups to ensure continuity of actions undertaken to improve the maritime security of the Gulf of Guinea, to allow the development of the blue economy, and its positive impact on the coastal populations.
The unifying role and the expertise of GoGIN were unanimously highlighted by the participants from various horizons, thus testifying to the relevance of the new orientations given to the project at the end of 2018.