Latin American Council

Articles 9 to 19 of the Panama Convention establishing the Latin American and Caribbean Economic System (SELA) define the nature, objectives, functions, composition and duties of the Latin American Council, which is the supreme organ of SELA. 

The Latin American Council is composed of one representative of each Member State with the right to vote and holds an annual regular session which is preceded by a preparatory meeting. 

As the Latin American Council is the maximum institution of SELA, its functions include establishing the general policies and regulations of SELA and its organs; deciding on the correct interpretation of the Convention establishing SELA and on the amendments proposed by Member States and adopting the measures needed to see to their implementation; deciding on other issues of interest in line with the objectives of SELA; considering and approving the reports, proposals and work program of the Permanent Secretariat; electing and removing the Permanent Secretary; approving the budget and financial statements of SELA and fixing the quotas of the Member States; considering the reports of the Action Committees, among other functions. 

The Latin American Council is also empowered to approve the common positions and strategies adopted by Member States on economic and social issues, both in international organizations and forums and vis-à-vis third countries or groups of countries. 

The decisions of the Latin American Council are adopted by consensus when they relate to general policies, the interpretation and proposal of amendments to the Convention establishing SELA and to the adoption of common positions and strategies, and by two-thirds majority or by absolute majority, whichever is greater, in the case of the other functions of the Latin American Council, such as the election and removal of the Permanent Secretariat, approval of the budget and the annual report of the Permanent Secretariat, approval of its regulations and that of its organs and approval of SELA’s work program, among others. Under no circumstances does the Latin American Council adopt decisions that may affect the national policies of Member States.