Community of Portuguese Language Countries

Community of Portuguese Language Countries
Comunidade dos Países de Língua Portuguesa
Community of Portuguese Language Countries
Headquarters Lisbon, Portugal
38°46′N 9°11′W / 38.767°N 9.183°W / 38.767; -9.183
Official language Portuguese
Membership Eight countries (plus three associate members)
 -  Secretary General Guinea-Bissau Domingos Simões Pereira
 -  Summit Presidency Angola Angola
Establishment 1996

Community of Portuguese Language Countries (Portuguese: Comunidade dos Países de Língua Portuguesa, pronounced: [kumuniˈðað(ɨ) ðuʃ pɐˈizɨʒ ðɨ ˈlĩɡwɐ puɾtuˈɣezɐ] (EP), [komuniˈdadʒi dus paˈiziz dʒi ˈlĩɡwɐ poʁtuˈɡezɐ] (BP); abbreviated to CPLP) is the intergovernmental organization for friendship among lusophone (Portuguese-speaking) nations where Portuguese is an official language. The Portuguese-speaking countries are home to more than 240 million people located across the globe. The CPLP nations have a combined area of about 10,772,000 square kilometres (4,159,000 sq mi).


Formation and member states

The CPLP was formed in 1996 with seven countries: Portugal, Brazil, Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, and São Tomé and Príncipe. East Timor joined the community in 2002 after gaining independence.

The CPLP is a bloc in the process of construction and the societies of the eight member nations have little knowledge of each other. One of the features of the CPLP is that its members are linked by a common language and shared cultural features, which form a bridge among countries separated by great distances and on different continents.

In 2005, during a meeting in Luanda, the ministers of culture of the eight countries declared the 5 May as the Lusophone Culture Day (Dia da Cultura Lusófona in Portuguese).

In July 2006, during the Bissau summit, Equatorial Guinea and Mauritius were admitted as Associate Observers[1] along with 17 International associations and organizations considered as Consultative Observers.

When the CPLP was formed, Equatorial Guinea asked for observer status. Equatorial Guinea was a Portuguese colony from the 15th to 18th centuries and has some territories where Portuguese-based creole languages are spoken and cultural connections with São Tomé and Príncipe and Portugal are felt. Also, the country has recently cooperated with Portuguese-speaking African countries and Brazil at an educational level. At the CPLP summit of July 2004, in São Tomé and Príncipe, the member states agreed to change the statutes of the community to accept states as associate observers. Equatorial Guinea is in discussion for full membership.[2]

Mauritius, which was unknown to Europeans until the Portuguese sailed there and has strong connections with Mozambique, also obtained associate observer status in 2006.

In 2008, Senegal, with historical connections to Portuguese colonisation in Casamance, was admitted as Associate Observer.


Summit Country City Year
I CPLP Summit  Portugal Lisbon 1996
II CPLP Summit  Cape Verde Praia 1998
III CPLP Summit  Mozambique Maputo 2000
IV CPLP Summit  Brazil Brasilia 2002
V CPLP Summit  São Tomé and Príncipe São Tomé 2004
VI CPLP Summit  Guinea-Bissau Bissau 2006
VII CPLP Summit  Portugal Lisbon 2008
VIII CPLP Summit  Angola Luanda 2010


The Portuguese-speaking countries are home to more than 240 million people located across the globe but having cultural similarities and a shared history. The CPLP nations have a combined area of about 10,742,000 square kilometres (4,148,000 sq mi), which is larger than Canada.

Since its formation, the CPLP has helped to solve problems in São Tomé and Príncipe and in Guinea-Bissau, because of coups d'état in those countries. These two problems were solved, and in fact, have helped these two countries to take economic reforms (in the case of São Tomé) and democratic ones (in the case of Guinea-Bissau).

The leaders of the CPLP believe that peace in Angola and Mozambique as well as East Timor's independence favors the further development of the CPLP and a strengthening of multilateral cooperation.

Since many children in rural areas of Lusophone Africa and East Timor are out-of-school youth, the education officials in these regions seek help from Portugal and Brazil to increase the education to spread Portuguese fluency (like establishing Instituto Camões language center branches in main cities and rural towns), as Portuguese is becoming one of the main languages in Southern Africa, where it is also taught in Namibia and South Africa.

In many developing Portuguese-speaking nations, Portuguese is the language of government and commerce which means that Portuguese speaking people from African nations can work and communicate with others in different parts of the world, especially in Portugal and Brazil, where the economies are stronger. Many leaders of Portuguese-speaking nations in Africa are fearful that language standards do not meet the fluency required and are therefore making it compulsory in schools so that a higher degree of fluency is achieved and young Africans will be able to speak a world language that will help them later in life.


The Organization’s Executive Secretariat is responsible for designing and implementing the CPLP's projects and initiatives. It is located in Lisbon, Portugal. The Executive Secretary has a two-year mandate, and can be re-elected only once.

The CPLP's guidelines and priorities are established by biannual Conference of Heads of State and the Organization’s plan of action is approved by the Council of Foreign Ministers, which meets every year.

There are also monthly meetings of the Permanent Steering Committee that follow specific initiatives and projects.

The CPLP is mainly financed by its eight member states.

The CPLP flag has now eight wings, not seven, to reflect East Timor's membership.

Executive secretaries
Name Took office Left office Country
Marcolino Moco 17 July 1996 July 2000 Angola
Dulce Maria Pereira July 2000 1 August 2002 Brazil
João Augusto de Médicis 1 August 2002 April 2004 Brazil
Zeferino Martins (Interim) April 2004 July 2004 Mozambique
Luís de Matos Monteiro da Fonseca July 2004 July 2008 Cape Verde
Domingos Simões Pereira 25 July 2008 Present Guinea-Bissau

Main initiatives

  • CPLP's HIV-Aids Programme – designed to help the 5 African member states
  • Centre for the Development of Entrepreneurial Skills – being established in Luanda, Angola
  • Centre for the Development of Public Administration – being established in Maputo, Mozambique
  • Centre for East-Timorese Official Languages
  • Conference on Malaria – to be held in São Tomé and Príncipe
  • Portuguese Language Census
  • Digital School and University
  • Electoral Mission to Guinea-Bissau (East Timor’s President, the Nobel Prize laureate, José Ramos-Horta is CPLP's Representative to the Electoral Process)
  • Emergency Project for the Support of Institution Rebuilding in Guinea-Bissau
  • Rebuilding East Timor’s Justice and Public Administration
  • Combating Poverty and Starvation
  • Felino Exercise - annual combined exercise of the Armed Forces of CPLP's countries
  • The CPLP Movie festival

Consultative Observers

Besides Associate Observer states, the CPLP also engages civil society organizations as Consultative Observers from various CPLP and non-CPLP countries (Spain and China) as well as pan-Lusophone bodies.[3]

Country Observadores consultivos
  • Fundação Agostinho Neto
  • Fundação Eduardo dos Santos
  • Conselho Nacional de Secretários de Saúde dos Estados Brasileiros
  • Comissão InterPaíses/Países de Língua Oficial Portuguesa (Fundação Rotarianos São Paulo)
  • Fundação Oswaldo Cruz
  • Fundação Roberto Marinho
  • Instituto Histórico e Geográfico Brasileiro
  • Universidade Estadual de Campinas
  • Universidade Federal da Bahia
  • Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro
  • Universidade Federal de Pernambuco
 Cape Verde
  • Fundação Amílcar Cabral
Flag of Galicia.svg Galicia
  • Galician Academy of the Portuguese Language
  • Instituto Internacional de Macau
  • Assistência Médica Internacional
  • Associação das Misericórdias de Portugal
  • Associação dos Ex-Deputados da Assembleia da República Portuguesa
  • Centro de Conciliação e Mediação de Conflitos - Concórdia
  • Círculo de Reflexão Lusófona
  • Faculdade de Direito da Universidade de Lisboa
  • Fundação Bial
  • Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian
  • Fundação Champalimaud
  • Fundação D. Manuel II
  • Fundação Luso-Americana para o Desenvolvimento
  • Fundação Luso-Brasileira para o Desenvolvimento do Mundo de Língua Portuguesa
  • Fundação Mário Soares
  • Fundação Oriente
  • Fundação para a Divulgação das Tecnologias de Informação
  • Fundação para o Desenvolvimento da Comunidade
  • Fundação Portugal-África
  • Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical
  • Médicos do Mundo
  • Organização Paramédicos de Catástrofe Internacional
  • Sociedade de Geografia de Lisboa
  • União das Mutualidades Portuguesas
  • Universidade Lusófona de Humanidades e Tecnologias
 São Tomé and Príncipe
  • Fundação Novo Futuro
  • Associação das Universidades de Língua Portuguesa
  • Associação dos Comités Olímpicos de Língua Oficial Portuguesa
  • Comunidade Médica de Língua Portuguesa
  • Comunidade Sindical dos Países de Língua Portuguesa
  • Confederação da Publicidade dos Países de Língua Portuguesa
  • Conselho Empresarial da CPLP
  • Fórum da Juventude da CPLP
  • União dos Advogados de Língua Portuguesa
  • Saúde em Português


Map of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries

See also


  1. ^ CPLP Associate Observers in CPLP Official website
  2. ^
  3. ^ Comunidade dos Países de Língua Portuguesa. "Lista completa dos Observadores Consultivos" (in Portuguese). 

External links

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