What is the Rio Group?
The Rio Group is a political consulting and concertation group. The States that conform the group are permanently debating and coordinating positions on different topics of the international agenda, that are of common interest between the States. The adopted consensus of the Rio Group constitues the largest and most representative form of expression of the region, in international forums and to the actors in the international scenario.
What Countries conform the Group?
The Rio Group is made up of most the Latinamerican Countries, these countries are also part of different subregional groups that exist. Currently these are the members with complete rights in the Rio Group: Mexico, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and El Salvador, all members of the Central American System of Integration (SICA); Panama, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia, members of the Andean Community; Brazil, Argentina,Uruguay and Paraguay, all members of Mercosur; Chile; Dominican Republic; and Guyana, the country that is representing members of the Caricom this year.
How does the Rio Group Work?
The Heads of State and Government of the Permanent Mecanism for Political Consultation and Consensus (Rio Group) have met annually since 1987 to strengthen political and economic relations between the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, to consolidate the growth and development of the region, as well as to reaffirm the cultural, geographical and historic identity of the Latin American and Caribbean nations.
Since its constitution the Rio Group has been defined as an informal mechanism, which lacks of permanent headquaters and which does not generate more burocracy. The mechanisms functions through the coordination of Pro Tempore Secretariat, that is rotated on an annual basis within its members.
To guarantee and ensure its continuity, the work of the Pro Tempore Secretariat is supported by a Troika scheme which implicates the participation of three countries: the country that is uptaking the Secretariat, the predecessor country and the country that will proceed the Secretariat the year after.
Where does the Rio Group Act?
The Rio Group's line of action is on the mulitlateral scenario. Eventhough the Rio Group has acted mostly in side the United Nations, it is in full capacity to present positions of the member states in other forum or multilateral scene, where a there is a need to consolidate a regional position towards one or various topics of the international agenda. Adicionally, the Rio Group has established a series of dialogues, some institucionalized and other informal, with the a specific country of with a group of countries. These dialogues take place once or twice a year, parrallel to the General Assembly of the United Nations in the month of September. The most important of these dialogues is an institucionalized meeting, that is held between Ministers of Foreign Affaris with the European Union. Other meetings with the members of the Rio Group and other countries take place with countries like: Japan and Canada or with groups like Council of Cooperation of the Persian Golf.