Latin American and Caribbean Group
The Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC: Group of Latin America and Caribbean Countries) is a United Nations Regional Group gathering all the Latin American and Caribbean states (17% of all UN members). It is one of the five UN regional groups, the others being the African Group, the Asia-Pacific Group, the Eastern European Group, and the Western European and Others Group (WEOG). It is a non-binding dialogue group where subjects concerning regional and international matter are discussed and its objective is to reach consensus. The president of GRULAC is elected for a two years mandate. Since April 2016, the presidency is held by Ramón Custodio from Honduras.
The regular meetings of GRULAC take place in Geneva. The goals of these meetings are to:
- Share documents on topics of common interest
- Discuss current topics in relation with international affairs and international organizations
- Build consensus and common positions
- Discuss which candidates will be presented for different international positions
The Ambassadors meeting is the most important of the meetings, though it is not a regular meeting and only occurs according to the needs of the moment, such as if important decisions are needed to be taken in other organizations or forums.
The different offices
The GRULAC has several offices:
- Two in Rome. One focuses primarily on bilateral issues, while the other concentrates on multilateral issues, in particular those of the UN agencies in Rome.
- One in Vienna which deals with candidate memberships to the group, and on topics of interest to the local organizations: UNOV, IAEA, CTBTO, United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs and UNIDO. GRULAC also has local discussions with other groups as the G77 + China and the Non-Aligned Movement.
- One in New York City where it deals with candidacy issues and other general topics.
List of member states
GRULAC comprises the 33 countries listed below:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Costa Rica
- Dominican Republic
- El Salvador
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Trinidad and Tobago
GRULAC, in 2006, formalized its support to Hunger-Free Latin America and the Caribbean Initiative.