Association of the Overseas Countries and Territories of the European Union (OCTA)

Association of the Overseas Countries and Territories of the European Union (OCTA)


The Association of the Overseas Countries and Territories of the European Union (OCTA) was created as a non-profit association in Brussels on 5 March 2003, pursuant to an agreement signed between 13 overseas countries and territories (the “OCTs”) on 18 September 2002 on the occasion of the second OCT Ministerial Conference held in Bonaire, in the Netherlands Antilles.


This association has 22 members: All of the inhabited OCTs associated to the European Union as well as the French Southern and Antarctic Territories. The Bermudas has been an OCTA member since 2014 as it has chosen to be part of the EU starting from 1st January 2014.


OCTA’s objectives as described in its statutes are:


- Provide a forum to exchange ideas and to discuss issues of common interest,

- Work towards the mutual benefit of the Members,

- Share specific information on issues which are relevant and can benefit all OCTs,

- Make recommendations, where applicable, to all OCT governments and to Member States of the European Union on the appropriate measures to take,

- Develop efficient working relations, as a group, with the European Union institutions, the ACP group (African, Caribbean and Pacific) and its secretariat as well as with other organisations and international, multilateral and regional institutions.

- Share best practices with its members in the corresponding fields.

- Defend Members’ collective interests and represent these towards the European Union institutions regarding all the topics highlighted in the Overseas Association Decision.


The latest “OCTA Strategic Plan” was adopted in 2010. It comprises three pillars: Communication, Capacity-Building and Cooperation.


OCTA has its own budget, based on the OCTs’ annual contributions (from 2,000 to 6,000 euros membership fees per year per member).


Moreover, since December 2012, the association has a technical assistance team on a full-time basis, located in Brussels and funded through the 10th EDF.


The office’s activities are described in an annual work plan, based on “roadmaps” adopted during ministerial conferences. The activities involve the use of internal expertise by the office team or of “short-term” external expertise. Some activities also plan “logistic funding” (seminars, travels, etc.).


As part of the dialogue with the European Union, OCTA is a key representative for European institutions on the EU-OCT partnership:


Since the 1Oth EDF, OCTA was entrusted the role of Authorising Officer for the regional allocation. OCTA is also the Contracting Authority for thematic projects in the regional allocation (OCTA Office project and IST project, 10 million euros).


OCTA has a renovated internet website and releases a newsletter (ON) several times per year in French and in English. (For more information, visit:


As the highest body of the association, the Ministerial Conference brings together every year all the representatives of the OCTs (Heads of government or designated members of OCT governments accompanied by their delegations) in advance of the EU-OCT Forum for Dialogue.


It defines the policies, approves the budgets and decisions for which its approval is required and is invested with the prerogatives necessary to the achievement of the association’s objectives. The Ministerial Conference elects the chairman and the vice-chairman of the Ministerial Conference, as well as the members, the president and the vice-president of the OCTA Executive Committee, called ExCo.


OCTA’s chairman chairs, organises and coordinates the Ministerial Conference. The Executive Committee acts as the secretariat of the Ministerial Conference. It comprises 9 members, representatives of the OCTs based in Paris, La Haye, London and Brussels. New Caledonia assumed the chairmanship of the Executive Committee from March 2011 to December 2013.


New Caledonia is a member of the Executive Committee.


The OCTA Knowledge Centre is a web-based platform located on the OCTA website that gives OCTs and stakeholders from the future thematic networks access to key information, training and resources in relation to OCTA, OCTs, Partnership Working Parties and  thematic networks. It is the preferred collaboration tool used by OCTA members with its stakeholders.

For more information please see :